To the Editor:
On behalf of Crisis Pregnancy Centers of the Wabash Valley, I am extremely concerned about the implications of the current health care proposal on the work of our pregnancy centers and on our nation.
Because the bill does not explicitly exclude abortion, it will be mandated in every health care plan at the expense of every American. If abortions are covered by a national health care plan, they will increase by 33 percent, according to the Guttmacher Institute. At a time when our nation is seeking to reduce abortion, this bill will significantly increase it.
The Crisis Pregnancy Center reaches out with hope, compassion and free practical support to empower women facing a crisis pregnancy to carry their pregnancy term.
Our center has been in operation more than 20 years and has provided help to more than 19,000 men and women and their families.
But if abortion is free, it will be more difficult for us to continue to attract this at-risk population with our life-affirming free services.
Secondly, this bill provides no provision for the rights of conscience of pro-life health care professionals. If these rights are trumped, pro-life individuals will leave or simply not enter the field of medicine. This would drastically affect access to quality health care by the millions of Americans who are cared for by them.
Plus, where will pregnancy centers like ours find like-minded doctors and nurses to provide free ultrasounds, prenatal care, or STD testing to individuals in need in our community? They simply won't exist.
The current bill also threatens to trump many state pro-life laws that protect women and the unborn. If such laws, like 24-hour waiting periods, are superseded by an abortion mandate, that precious window of time that pregnancy centers have to reach women with resources, information and support will be lost.
Finally, we anticipate that this bill would greatly increase abortions, and if this happens, just consider that vast amounts of women and men who will need post-abortion support, which our center provides.
On behalf of the women that have been helped by the Crisis Pregnancy Center, we call on Congress to oppose any health care bill unless language is adopted to explicitly exclude abortion.
Crisis Pregnancy Centers of the Wabash Valley