Missouri House Backs Health Care Conscience Measure
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - The Missouri House has passed a bill letting health care workers refuse tasks that violate their religious or ethical beliefs.
Thursday's approval on a vote of 113-41 sends the measure to the Senate.
The bill prohibits punishment of doctors, nurses and other health care workers who refuse to participate in abortions, embryonic stem cell research, contraception and other procedures or research that violate their beliefs. Health care institutions also would have protections.
Republican House Majority Leader Tim Jones is sponsoring the legislation. He describes it as a "shield" that boosts employment rights for workers.
Several Democratic critics argued the legislation would inhibit access to health care for some Missourians.