Jonathan Lange: The Board Of Medicine Exists To Protect Patients, Not Practitioners

Columnist Jonathan Lange writes, "Wyoming should be thankful for the integrity and courage of doctors like Eric Cubin. His persistent voice against the groupthink of our day is what the Board of Medicine needs most of all."

Jonathan Lange

May 31, 20245 min read

Jonathan lange
(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

SF 99 Children Gender Change Prohibition, is Wyoming law.

It passed overwhelmingly in the Senate (26-5) and House (55-6) because it protects minors from life-changing and irreversible damage caused by gender drugs and surgeries.

Gov. Gordon explained, “I signed Senate File 99 because I support the protections this bill includes for children.”

Radiologist, Eric Cubin, also supports those protections. In late February, he sent an email to all 62 members of Wyoming’s House of Representatives. He wrote: “From the perspective of a Wyoming doctor who actually practices medicine at the very hospital where he was born, I can tell you that this is a good bill.”

Last week Gordon fired Cubin from his appointment to the Wyoming Board of Medicine for writing that email.

The Board of Medicine (BOM) is a creation of Wyoming’s “Medical Practice Act” (W.S. 33-26). It is charged with “determin[ing] the fitness of all persons desiring to practice medicine in this state” (W.S. 33:26-202).

The Medical Practice Act was not written to protect physician autonomy. It was written to protect patients from the practice of bad medicine.

It requires the governor to appoint physicians to the BOM who are qualified to see to it that laws like SF 99 are honored. Gordon appointed Cubin in 2020 and, after the passage of SF 99, asked the Senate to give him another four-year term.

Now, scarcely two months later, Gordon asked for his resignation. Why the about-face?

He told Cubin, “Medical professionals should be confident that their licensure, which is their livelihood, will be handled professionally and clinically examined on merits alone.”

Cubin’s email to the House provides exactly this sort of confidence. It demonstrated his competence to evaluate the practice of medicine on its own merits. He exhibited the needed integrity to remain independent of non-government lobby groups.

While Cubin is a member of the Wyoming Medical Society (WMS), he understands that Wyoming’s Board of Medicine answers to the legislature, not a lobby group. The Wyoming Medical Society, has an agenda of its own that does not reflect citizen concerns.

In the Spring 2023 issue of Wyoming Medicine, the WMS publicly advocated for gender treatments on minors. This violates basic medical ethics. Minors are incapable of informed consent. Besides, typical studies on hormone blockers and cross-sex hormones are too poor in quality to inform anyone—even if they can consent.

Over a period of months, Cubin asked WMS president, Kris Schamber, to modify the WMS position. He repeatedly urged a poll to determine whether the WMS position represented its membership. (Schamber claimed that the WMS never polls its members. But doctors who were practicing while he was still in residency remember participating in a poll only to watch the WMS publicly take the losing position.)

Only after months of stonewalling, when it was clear that the WMS would continue to oppose SF 99 against all evidence, Cubin decided to put his concerns into writing. His competence and courage to speak out against medical groupthink are precisely the qualities needed to protect the citizens of Wyoming.

Schamber thinks that, “. . . an individual physician removes their [sic] own personal beliefs from a vote they [sic] render on a specific medical topic.” In other words, turn off your mind and follow the crowd. This is alarming.

The devastating harm of groupthink on the practice of medicine is meticulously documented by Hannah Barnes in her 2023 book, “Time to Think: The Inside Story of Tavistock’s Gender Service for Children.”

She tells the story of the medical scandal that took down the Tavistock gender clinic while permanently disabling thousands of British children. A big part of the story is how groupthink stifled the ability of Tavistock to hear reasonable voices like Cubin’s.

Gordon justified the removal of Cubin by confusing conscientious independence with “bias.” He thinks Cubin’s email to the House violated some unwritten rule. What rule?

For years, pro-life advocates have listened in horror as members of the Wyoming Board of Medicine testified like pro-choice lobbyists. Even when BOM member, Rene Hinkle testified against giving life-saving care to infants born alive, the governor reappointed her to the Board of Medicine—over the objections of numerous senators.

Cubin is not biased. He opposes the groupthink of the medical establishment. A poll of Wyoming doctors would have proved that he’s not alone. Perhaps one day the WMS will be brave enough to conduct one.

Until then, Wyoming should be thankful for the integrity and courage of doctors like Eric Cubin. His persistent voice against the groupthink of our day is what the Board of Medicine needs most of all. It exists to protect Wyomingites from bad medicine, not to protect bad medicine from Wyomingites.

Jonathan Lange is a Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod pastor in Evanston and Kemmerer and serves the Wyoming Pastors Network. Follow his blog at Email:

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Jonathan Lange