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AIDS and the Law
Apr 14, 2004

I have recently been dianosed positive and am now undergoing a variety of monthly blood testing in order to establish a baseline for my body's functions (counts & loads, liver, kidney, triglycerides, etc) The one lab tech at the clinic closest to my home refuses to draw my blood because I am Poz; therefore I travel a further distance to get my blood work done at a 'sister' clinic. These labs are part of our County Hospital Health System and I live in Fort Worth, Texas if that makes a difference. My question is: Is my Lab Techs refusal to take my blood legal?

Response from Ms. Breuer

I'm not a lawyer, but nope. Not legal to refuse care based on HIV status, from everything I know. Lab tech is way out of line.

Time to write a clear, non-profane letter (just like the one you posted here) to the senior administrator of the county hospital health system asking what action they plan to take to reverse this discrimination. Copy it to the county board of health. Be firm but not angry, and state a reasonable date by which you expect to hear a reply. If you get a mealy-mouthed "so sorry you've been inconvenienced," but no remedial action, then it's time to send a copy of all correspondence to the state board of hospitals. But I don't think you'll need to take it that far.

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