May 16, 2022 Update
AB 2098, was passed in the Assembly Business and Professions Committee and in the Assembly Appropriations Committee and is awaiting a vote by the entire Assembly.
The bill, originally broadly applicable to any information shared by a physician, was amended to narrow the scope of the bill to encompass only information that is shared by a doctor to a patient under their care. It was also amended to make clear that in order for the Medical Board to bring disciplinary action against a physician, the doctor must have deviated from the standard of care and patient harm must have occurred as the result of the information shared.
AB 2098 (Physicians and surgeons: unprofessional conduct) is likely to be heard on the Assembly Floor this afternoon.
Please call your assembly member now to oppose the bill.
This bill would designate the dissemination or promotion of misinformation or disinformation related to the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, or “COVID-19,” by a physician or surgeon as unprofessional conduct, allowing the Medical Board to take action against such physician or surgeon.
Find your assembly member here: https://findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov/
"I am calling as a constituent to ask the Assembly member to vote no or abstain on AB 2098 which is overly broad and has unconstitutional restrictions on free speech."
TaKe Action 2:
Submit Your Opposition Letter to Policy Committees
Make sure that your position on this bill is heard and put on record by submitting you comments to the California Legislature Position Letter Portal.
Comments will be shared with the appropriate policy committee members hearing the bill.
"I oppose AB 2098 which would designate the dissemination or promotion of misinformation or disinformation related to the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, or “COVID-19,” by a physician or surgeon as unprofessional conduct. Doctors go through rigorous education and training and should be allowed to voice their medical and professional opinions freely. We already have a system in place for disciplining doctors that are causing harm."
You might add a personal experience or talking points outlined below.
Talking Points for AB 2098
Specific Ask: Oppose AB 2098 or abstain from voting on the bill.
Main Talking Points
- Doctors go through rigorous education and training and should be allowed to voice their medical and professional opinions freely.
- Science and medicine have historically been advanced through minority voices. The stifling of dissenting opinion will have long lasting effects on the advancement of health care.
- The unintended consequence might be that the healthcare provider shortage would be exacerbated by the proposed law.
- The understanding of the data and science related to COVID-19 continues to change as more studies are done. Standards of care are being updated as new information and treatments emerge. Any attempt at determining “contemporary scientific consensus” will be fleeting.