released 1:00 P.M.
April 18, 2008
Ang Ladlad, the national organization of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Filipinos, has slammed the doctors and nurses involved in the rectal operation of a gay patient that was later uploaded in YouTube.
“This is a violation of the patient-doctor confidentiality that is part of the Code of Ethics of a medical practitioner,” said Danton Remoto, chairman of Ang Ladlad and Associate Professor of English at Ateneo de Manila University. “What rubs salt on the patient’s dignity was the fact that the doctors and nurses were shown saying anti-gay statements while making fun of the sedated patient. In this case, it is not the patient but the doctors who are sick.”
The came stemmed from the rectal operation of “Jan-Jan,” a 39-year-old gay man who had sex in Cebu City on New Year’s Eve. He claimed he was drunk and his partner inserted a perfume canister in his rectum, which necessitated an operation on January 3. The operation was done at the government-run Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center. He said that “I trusted them. And yet they ridiculed me. . . Was that something a professional would do? I can’t even walk on the streets without being laughed at by my neighbors. I want my ordeal to end. I hope it doesn’t happen to anyone else.”
“We laud the investigation being done by the hospital. However, we would like to stress that the victim was made to sign a piece of paper he did not read nor was it explained to him. There seems to be a pattern of deception here. They wanted to turn him and his case into an object of fun, not of scientific or medical study. Therefore, we are batting for the revocation of licenses of the medical people involved. They have just violated the confidentiality clause between doctor and patient, and also the patient’s right to privacy. How would they feel if they were the ones whose images are spreading around in the limitless world of cyberspace?”
Ang Ladlad will offer psychological counseling to the victim, as well as help his lawyer, Guiller Ceniza, pursue the case in court. “Doctors are sometimes considered like gods who have power over our lives. In this case, they did not only defame and discriminate against another person, but they also stained the very dignity of their profession. We will pursue this case all the way to the Professional Regulations Commission and the Civil Service Commission. These callous people deserve to be taught a lesson they will never forget,” Remoto concluded.