When Matthew Moore, 46, saw that his sexual orientation made it on to a medical report, he was shocked. However, Moore is openly gay, and has no qualms about that being included in his medical record. He just doesn’t want it to be listed as a medical condition or illness, akin to sexual deviance.
Earlier this year, Moore, who lives in Southern California, started seeing a new doctor at Torrance Memorial Physician Network’s Manhattan Beach office, who suggested he undergo a routine physical. When he returned to the office to pick up the report, he saw that “homosexual behavior” was listed as both a sickness with a code reflecting mental illness, and as chronic condition, reported Los Angeles’ KNBC-TV.
"My jaw was on the floor. At first, I kind of laughed, I thought, 'Here's another way that gay people are lessened and made to feel less-than,' and then as I thought about it and as I dealt with it, it angered me," Moore told KNBC
When he later returned to the office, at the suggestion of an attorney and friends, the doctor defended her position when asked to explain it. The doctor said the proper treatment for homosexuality “is still up for debate” and the sexual orientation is “still being thought of as a disease,” which is untrue.
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"I was dumbfounded," Moore said.
Moore sent a letter to the Network about the situation, and received an apology, which read: "We fully appreciate your frustration and anger related to your experience and are committed to ensuring that such events are not repeated," Heidi Assigal, senior director of Torrance Health Association, Inc., wrote, in part.
"We would like to unequivocally state that the Torrance Memorial Physician Network does not view homosexuality as a disease or a chronic condition and we do not endorse or approve of the use of Code 302.0 as a diagnosis for homosexuality."
Moore said he won’t file a lawsuit, but went public with his case to let people know it’s important to speak up when events like this occur.
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"If I was a 14-year-old in a small town in Indiana, where I'm from, and I had a doctor tell me or my parents that I was sick because they thought I was gay, it would've been very damaging," he said.