Learn more about the latest on reproductive health care

To the editor:

Access to full reproductive health care without fear and confusion is becoming less and less available in the U.S. Decriminalization of abortion in Mexico occurred recently. It has never been criminalized in Canada.

The Abortion Access Committee of Adirondack Voters for Change is presenting a program at Lake Flower Landing on Sept. 28 at 7 p.m. about the current and changing landscape of abortion care in the U.S. Two prestigious legal and medical experts will be present for a Q-and-A. This informative update will help you understand the ramifications of changing reproductive health care laws in this country. Living in New York will not give us protection from restrictive federal rulings and laws.

The authority of the FDA to approve and regulate drugs has become ensnared in the abortion fight as has the routine management of miscarriages which occur in at least one third of all pregnancies and in the timely management of many pregnancy complications. Politicians who have no medical education are dictating how medical providers can practice medicine.

Doctors, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and midwives are leaving the most underserved states because of the restrictions. These underserved states are already known as “OB/GYN deserts,” where maternal mortality and unplanned pregnancies are high, expanded Medicaid is not available, and services for children and their families are poor.

Medical school applicants to OB/GYN residencies are declining in states with restricted access. ACOG Board Certification requires that residents obtain abortion training. Recruiting reproductive health care providers in restricted states is next to impossible. Providers who call themselves “pro-life” and support abortion bans are not relocating to restricted states.

Lawsuits are ballooning by those denied life-saving care which was delayed or denied because providers are afraid to be ratted on by friends, families, staff members, or any citizen for providing timely high standard of care and humane care to women of all political persuasions. Delays constitute malpractice and are unethical. Providers do things they know are malpractice out of fear of criminal prosecution, an untenable ethical dilemma.

Many legislators who supported abortion restrictions claim they had no idea of the collateral damage and unforeseen consequences of their actions. However, few have tried to mitigate the restrictions to allow providers the ability to make medical decisions freely and for women to choose to embark on a pregnancy even if high risk. Traveling pregnant women, young women going off to college, recruiters and job seekers will have to factor in “what ifs” and account for local laws. Enlisting in the military (or being a family member of someone who does) risks being stationed in a restricted state with inadequate reproductive health care. Travel by women may be questioned at the border or upon return if pending legislation prevails.

Come to this presentation to get up to date, ask questions, and listen!

Dorothy Federman

Saranac Lake


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