BEIJING, Nov. 11 (Xinhuanet) -- Gay marriage bans have resulted in health disparities and should be overturned, argued the American Medical Association (AMA) as quoted by media reports Wednesday.
On the other hand, improving health disparities "in the long run will certainly help efforts to win marriage equality," said Rea Carey, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, a Washington-based advocacy group.
Same-sex families lack other benefits afforded married couples, including tax breaks, spouse benefits under retirement plans and Social Security survivor benefits -- all of which can put their health at risk, said AMA in its council report.
However, Jenny Tyree, a marriage analyst for Focus on the Family Action, called it a health insurance problem, not a marriage problem.
"We all know there are problems with health care so let's solve the problem of the uninsured, rather than messing with marriage," she said.
Also, some doctors say the policy forcing gay service members to keep their sexual orientation secret has "a chilling effect" on open communication between gays and their doctors.
"A law which makes people lie to their physicians is a bad law," said Dr. David Fassler, a University of Vermont psychiatry professor.