In anticipation of the 42nd anniversary of Roe v. Wade, anti-choice representatives announced plans last week to introduce a dangerous ban on abortion at 20 weeks. But late yesterday, as they were losing support from their constituents and fellow House members, they abandoned those efforts.
Subsequently, and on the eve of the anniversary of this historical milestone, they resurrected an old piece of legislation: H.R. 7, a bill that would dismantle insurance coverage for abortion.
“From the point of view of physicians, this last-minute switch looks like a cynical attempt to wrest a win out of a losing situation—all at the expense of the well-being of the women we care for every day. One minute they champion a later abortion ban, and when they see that the public won’t stand for that, they pivot to push a ban on insurance coverage. Whether it’s by narrowing the window, or making care unaffordable, they are determined to take away women’s autonomy and decision-making when it comes to accessing needed medical care. It would be absurd if it weren’t so dangerous.”
These restrictions have been a part of federal budgets since 1977. Withholding insurance coverage for abortion creates profound hardships for women and their families, particularly for those who already face significant barriers to receiving high-quality health care. This is a terrible injustice, and it needs to end this year. Thirty-eight years of inequity is enough!
While 2014 draws to a close, we’re gearing up for 2015. As doctors, we believe that personal decisions about health care should be medical — not political. We’re fighting back, and how we do this is what makes us unique: We bring the physician’s distinctive voice to debates over reproductive health care by training physician-advocates to speak out in Washington, in state legislatures, in the media, and in hospitals and medical schools.
We could not have come this far without your support. Please consider making a year-end donation or becoming a member before 2015. Every tax-deductible dollar you contribute will increase our ability to bring together the medical community and concerned supporters on behalf of reproductive health policies that meet everyone’s needs.
Physicians for Reproductive Health has joined over 350 organizations around the world to launch the first-ever Universal Health Coverage Day on December 12, 2014. This historic coalition marks the anniversary of a landmark United Nations resolution urging all countries to provide universal access to health care without financial hardship.
No one should fall into poverty because they get sick and need health care. Universal health coverage is an essential component for making comprehensive reproductive health care access a reality for all.
Our doctors have seen the difference that insurance coverage for basic reproductive health care, like contraception, can make in women’s lives. Read their stories here.
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