Bloomberg Law
March 4, 2022, 10:35 AMUpdated: March 4, 2022, 4:53 PM

Covid-19 Misinformation Tests Doctors’ Free Speech Rights (1)

Christopher Brown
Christopher Brown
Staff Correspondent

Doctors who have called the Covid-19 vaccine a hoax or say it changes people’s DNA infuriate public health watchdogs, but the First Amendment could protect medical professionals from aggressive attempts by state licensing boards to crack down on false information.

Medical professionals speaking outside the context of a one-on-one doctor-patient relationship have traditionally enjoyed the full free-speech protections of the First Amendment.

The government must likely show it has good reason—a “compelling interest"—to restrict a doctor’s speech, and that its action is “narrowly tailored” to prevent the harms that could result from the speech.

The goal is to allow doctors ...

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