General: Young pro-life doctor wins battle to practise

The Health Professions Council of SA has bowed to pressure from various lobby groups pressing the case of pro-life medic Jacques de Vos and cleared him to practise as a doctor again, says a Cape Argus report. The decision means that De Vos can continue with his career after an almost five-year ban during which his battle with the council got as far as the Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) in an attempt to force a disciplinary hearing. The court’s judgment was reserved. In 2017, De Vos was suspended from a gynecology rotation during his internship at Two Military Hospital in Cape Town after advising a woman that her 19-week-old unborn baby was a human life. The allegations that he likened her terminating her pregnancy to the killing of a human being led to his being charged with dissuading the patient from terminating her pregnancy, disrespecting the dignity of the patient, and using emotive language to convey his beliefs. As a result, Two Military Hospital refused to sign off De Vos’ internship, which he had completed, citing what was termed ‘his refusal to comply with basic medical ethics'. With council having relented and approved his registration, De Vos can complete his community service as a medical doctor.

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