Physicians for Informed Consent Shares Win for Freedom of Speech and Health Freedom, as Legislature and Governor Repeal Controversial AB 2098 COVID-19 Law

Now PIC and allies file motion to directly challenge medical board’s claimed authority to censor California doctors’ recommendations

Newport Beach, Calif., October 7, 2023 (Newswire) –

Physicians for Informed Consent (PIC), a nonprofit educational organization focused on science and statistics, has been advocating for physicians’ right to free speech and protecting its physician members from being investigated for so-called “COVID-19 misinformation” since early 2022. In a letter to the California legislature, PIC founder and president Dr. Shira Miller wrote, “Without California doctors being free to speak their mind and educate the public, regarding COVID-19 or vaccination or any other controversial topic, no other public health laws will matter as legislators will not be able to obtain knowledge from a breadth of physician and surgeon opinions, and the public will not be able to obtain their doctors’ honest opinion—because doctors who think and act differently from the contemporary ‘applicable standard of care’ will fear losing their medical license. Section 2234.1 of the Business and Professions Code respects and protects doctors who think outside the box.”

Per PIC general counsel, Greg Glaser, Esq., when one of PIC’s members was investigated by the medical board for speaking out (at a Zoom schoolboard meeting) against the government’s response to the pandemic, the organization helped organize and fund a lawsuit challenging the investigation on First Amendment grounds; Shortly after the case was filed, the medical board dropped the investigation.

After AB 2098 passed, PIC was one of several plaintiffs that filed a First Amendment free speech lawsuit. The PIC case, Hoang v. Bonta—primarily funded by Children’s Health Defense—was led by health care attorney Rick Jaffe, Esq. and Robert F. Kennedy Jr.; and on January 25, 2023, the PIC case and the related Hoeg v. Newsom case together secured a preliminary injunction barring enforcement of the law against each plaintiff.

Last week the California legislature discretely repealed AB 2098/B&P §2270 by passing SB 815—which Governor Newsom then promptly signed. In response, Dr. Miller said, “This is a pivotal win and indirect indication that AB 2098 was unconstitutional; however, as our original First Amendment lawsuit may now be moot, and AB 2098’s original author Assemblyman Evan Low has publicized his belief that ‘the Medical Board of California will continue to maintain the authority to hold medical licensees accountable for deviating from the standard of care and misinforming their patients about COVID-19 treatments,’ and we know of at least one physician who currently is still being investigated, we are continuing the effort to safeguard California’s physicians’ right to free speech.” In turn, PIC filed a first amended complaint (2:22-cv-02147-WBS-AC) to directly challenge the medical boards’ claimed authority “to censor, investigate or prosecute or sanction physicians for their protected speech under the general standard of care statutes.” COVID-19 alternative treatment heroes Dr. Pierre Kory and Dr. Brian Tyson have been added as plaintiffs.

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