By Nancy Valko
In an ironically titled May 4, 2019 MedPage article “Panel: Abortion Providers Are People, Too,“ a panel of “abortion providers” claim that “Doctors (are) a lost voice in abortion political battle, media coverage”.
The panel was held at the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists (ACOG)annual meeting and maintained that “Abortion providers are fighting an uphill battle against a societal narrative that has attached so much stigma to the procedure, and trying to regain some of their humanity as people, not just abortion providers.” (Emphasis added)
These doctors cite the “incendiary” coverage of abortion and that the more than 300 pieces of abortion-related state legislation introduced in the first 3 months of 2019 has led to confusion about what they are and aren’t allowed to do.
One woman doctor who said she was once anti-abortion but now performs abortions claimed that she was “doxxed” (harassed when her personal information was revealed online) when she “came out” as an “abortion provider”. She complained that media stories about abortion rarely include references to “maternal care doctors, or physician specializing in maternal-fetal medicine-in other words, the doctors actually performing the procedures.”
Instead she says much of the media coverage is focused on the dangers to the doctors performing abortions and that as a result, “abortion is seen as inherently dangerous.”
Also cited was a recent online survey of 321 abortion providers showed that nearly all of the respondents were women and that 1/5 were not currently doing abortions. The respondents discussed a so-called “false dichotomy” between being pro-choice and pro-child that increases tension for the abortion provider since “59% of women who have an abortion already have children.”
One abortion provider claimed that becoming a parent “reinforced her commitment and passion for her profession” and helped her better bond with her patients, given the stigma of abortion.
“ACOG, PLANNED PARENTHOOD PROUD TO FIGHT FOR WOMEN’S HEALTHCARE”
A second article from the ACOG annual meeting titled “ACOG, Planned Parenthood Proud to Fight for Women’s Healthcare” had the subtitle “Organizations collaborated on Washington advocacy”. Cecile Richards, outgoing president of Planned Parenthood, gave a lecture on the History of Planned Parenthood.
Hal Lawrence, MD, ACOG executive vice president and chief executive officer, praised Planned Parenthood for providing, among other “services”–“300,000 mammograms per year”, even though Planned Parenthood does not do mammograms. Dr. Lawrence also spoke:
“about the hope for the future on a clinical level in the form of telemedicine for women’s healthcare, including medication abortion.
“It’s going to solve our access problem,” he said. “If we don’t use telemedicine, we’ll never solve the access problem because we don’t have enough providers.” (Emphasis added)
There are many reasons why there are not “enough” abortionists.
As a nurse, I left the American Nurses Association many years ago because of its support for even partial-birth abortion, lack of support for real conscience rights and my ultimately futile attempts to change this. I am not alone.
I also know many other doctors and nurses who left their national organizations over their support for legalized abortion. It’s an outrage that these national organizations claim to speak for nurses and doctors when just a fraction of us belong or agree with their positions.
Instead, many of us personally work to provide women and their babies the help and support they need regardless of their circumstances. Abortion is not the answer.
In addition, those doctors (and nurses) who perform abortions are also wounded by abortion and in need of our prayers, witness and compassionate outreach as Abby Johnson has shown in her book and movie “Unplanned”.
At the same time, all of us must also continue working tirelessly towards a world where every life is respected and abortion is unthinkable.
Editor’s note. This appeared on Nancy’s blog and is reposted with permission.