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Christian Medical Association CEO Quits AMA over Health Care Support, Embryo Research

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BRISTOL, TN, December 17, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Dr. David Stevens, CEO of the 17,000-member Christian Medical Association, the nation's largest faith-based association of doctors, today announced that he is canceling his membership in the American Medical Association as a way of publicly protesting what he says is the AMA's control by special interests that do not represent most physicians. The AMA has come under fire for endorsing healthcare overhaul legislation after closed-door negotiations with legislators.

"I can no longer associate with or support an organization that is unscientific, unprofessional and controlled by special interests," Dr. Stevens asserted in a letter sent earlier this week to the AMA. Dr. Stevens is also advising the organization's 17,000 members to "carefully consider if they should continue their memberships in the AMA."

Dr. Stevens noted in his letter, "The AMA claims to put the needs of patients first and then meets with Senate leaders to bargain for higher physician Medicare reimbursement in exchange for support of healthcare reform legislation. This unseemly, behind-closed-doors session trades the future welfare of our patients away for physicians' personal gain. It is a violation of the doctor-patient covenant and sells out our professional heritage.

"The AMA has even violated its own ethical statements in political advocacy at the behest of a vocal pro-abortion faction within AMA. Your resolution on right of conscience states that the 'AMA reaffirms that neither physician, hospital, nor hospital personnel shall be required to perform any act violative of personally held moral principles.' Yet you have worked vigorously at the federal level to overturn the only federal regulation that protects your members from this type of discrimination."

Dr. Stevens also cited the AMA's support of abortion and embryonic stem cell research, same-sex marriage and medical marijuana as examples of policies that contradict and undermine the positions of many physicians.

Dr. Stevens concluded, "In light of radical policies, it is no wonder that AMA's membership has dropped since the 1960's from nearly three of four practicing doctors to closer to one in five. Personally, I no longer see any hope of changing your radical positions by working from the inside."

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