A Colorado doctor has refused to perform Lasik vision-correction surgery on two patients who are HIV-positive, prompting the nonprofit Legal Center for People With Disabilities to file a discrimination complaint against the physician and the Lasik Vision Institute with the Colorado Civil Rights Division, the Denver Post reports. According to the complaint, an employee at the Glendale, Colo.-based Lasik Vision Institute told an HIV-positive man in 2003 that eye surgeon Paul Cutarelli would not perform vision-correction surgery on him because of his HIV status. The Legal Center also says an HIV-positive woman was denied surgery at the Lasik Vision Institute without an examination to determine whether her HIV status would affect her candidacy for the procedure.
"Lasik Vision Institute and Dr. Cutarelli did not follow established medical guidelines for properly screening candidates for Lasik surgery," Maxfield said in a statement. "I am gravely concerned that a national company with many thousands of customers, as well as a licensed MD, would be so far behind established medical practice and established law." Cutarelli, his attorney, and an attorney for the vision center could not be reached for comment by Post reporters.