The President’s executive order is being heralded as a victory by gay rights activists who have used discriminatory hospital visitation policies as an argument for gay marriage.
But hospital officials in Georgia say that the order doesn’t really change anything.
That’s because many of the state’s hospitals already practice what’s called “family centered care”. That means it’s up to the patient to decide who can visit them.
Denise Parrish is a spokesperson for MCG Health in Augusta. She says it’s hard to believe that any hospitals still have discriminatory visitation policies.
"All hospital care in today’s world should be focused on the patient and one of the things we do is treat patients with dignity and respect regardless of their circumstances," said Parrish.
Critics of the President say the order is a political move pandering to advocates of same sex marriage.