The article, with its deceitful style of pseudo-objectivity, suggests that support for the rights of conscience, especially religious conscience, are novel innovations. It even places scare quotes around the word conscience:
The issue has become acute for some religious workers, especially devout Christians, for whom the concept of "conscience" plays a particularly prominent role.
One bioethicist, reflecting his profession's characteristic secular tribalism, declares:
"As soon as you become a licensed professional, you take on certain obligations to act like a professional, which means your patients come first," said R. Alta Charo, a bioethicist and lawyer at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. "You are not supposed to use your professional status as a vehicle for cultural conquest."
Of course this is special pleading. Secularist professionals are already using their status to drive cultural changes. They'd just rather not have anybody attempting to usurp the driver's seat.
Some of these matters have been limned in a previous post, The Limits of Non-Confessional Professionalism.
For the establishment's gameplan, see the ACLU's articles on "Religious Refusals and Reproductive Rights," which goes so far as to attempt to force religious hospitals to perform abortions.