A Tennessee Republican lawmaker is threatening to take action against a state board overseeing doctors unless they remove a statement that warns physicians against spreading COVID-19 vaccine misinformation. “If you fail to act promptly, your organization will be required to appear before the Joint Government Operations Committee to explain your inaction,” GOP Rep. John Ragan wrote to Dr. Melanie Blake, the president of the Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners. The Nov. 15. letter, part of a series between Ragan and Blake, was in response to a new state law prohibiting state boards from punishing doctors who make misleading claims regarding the vaccine or administer unproven treatments, such as ivermectin.
The law has been opposed by physicians and hospital groups. “If the board cannot exert its influence appropriately in the policing of our profession, we are losing our autonomy and the trust of our patients,” Nashville Dr. Amy Bono told the Tennessee Lookout. The policy, which was approved by the entire state board, was still on the state health department’s website Friday evening.