The American Healthcare Act Is Not Pro-Life

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Well, that takes the cake.

I think I’ve heard the silliest comment on healthcare yet.

A gentleman on Facebook just calmly explained that, if a pregnant woman loses her medicaid, “They can go to Crisis pregnancy centers for all kinds of help. There are pro-life Doctors that give free care. Help is very accessible.”

Yes, somebody thinks that.

I feel like I shouldn’t have to say this, but since it came up, I want to clarify to everyone who hasn’t used one how crisis pregnancy centers work. There are many crisis pregnancy centers around the country. Some are mediocre, some are awful, and some are fantastic. But most, if not all, crisis pregnancy centers do not have a doctor on staff. They do not have facilities to birth babies. They often do not have anyone who can even write a prescription. Sometimes they don’t even have RNs. What a crisis pregnancy center has is pregnancy test strips, and cups to pee in, and packages of baby clothing, and volunteers. The main job of the volunteer is to dip the test strip in the pee, see if the client is pregnant, talk her out of an abortion, help her enroll in medicaid and refer her to a doctor.  Full stop.

The volunteer does not and cannot deliver babies. She does not and cannot administer prenatal care. test for or prescribe antibiotics in case of bacterial vaginosis. She does not and cannot place a PICC line and administer fluids in case of hyperemisis gravidarum. She does not and cannot diagnose or treat any medical condition, because she’s not a medical professional. She’s the person whose job it is to refer the client to a medical professional who takes Medicaid.

Crisis pregnancy centers rely on Medicaid. Without Medicaid, they cannot save any babies.

Pro-life obstetricians accept medicaid, or at least it makes no sense if they claim to be pro-life and refuse to. They do not and cannot deliver a poor woman’s baby for free, because if they did that, they couldn’t afford to deliver babies in the first place. Obstetricians can’t deliver babies without having extremely high malpractice insurance, and they pay for that insurance policy by charging the patient or the patient’s insurance for their services. And that’s just the doctor’s fee. Even if the doctor agreed to deliver the baby for free, the patient would still be stuck paying for the hospital or birth center, the nurses or midwives or whoever delivered the baby, the pediatric care for the baby and so on. If they end up needing a c-section, they’d have to pay the anesthesiologist and pay all the expenses for surgery as well.

Should the system be like this? Perhaps not. Right now it is. Right now, the cost of an uncomplicated vaginal birth is about $9600. The cost of an uncomplicated Cesarean is about $15800. And I know that someone is going to get on and say that some women choose to give birth at home, and that’s their business, but very rarely is that free. And if any complications should come up during their natural childbirth, they’ll end up in the hospital paying ten thousand dollars or more anyway.

Crisis pregnancy centers depend upon Medicaid. Pro-life doctors depend upon Medicaid.

I’ve seen it predicted today that 24 million people will lose their healthcare if the Republicans get their way. If that happens, and if any of these 24 million people happen to be female and fertile, chances are many of them are going to get pregnant anyway. When they do, they’ll face a choice. Are they going to find a way to cough up between ten and sixteen thousand dollars and hope it doesn’t cost more? Or are they going to find a way to cough up about five hundred dollars, the average cost of an abortion?

What would you do?

What if you went to the crisis pregnancy center, and they said they had nothing to offer you but test strips and baby clothes?

And we see, once again, that being truly pro-life has nothing to do with being a Republican. As a matter of fact, supporting the Republican vision for healthcare right now is absolutely a pro-abortion act. De-funding Planned Parenthood for one year is not going to stem this tide in any way. Unborn babies are not going to vanish if they can neither be born nor easily aborted. They are humans. They already exist. They’re coming out one way or another. They are in danger, and their mothers are in danger as well, whether they give birth unassisted or get an abortion.

I just know someone is going to suggest that the local churches should take up a collection, but think about that for a minute. Go ask your pastor what the usual collection amount for a Sunday is– or, you can often find it printed on the weekly bulletin without asking. Now, multiply that by fifty-two weeks. Remember that number; that’s how much your church takes in in a year to cover all of its expenses. Now, multiply the number of pregnant women in your community by ten thousand (we’re assuming that not a single one of them will have complications). Now, subtract that second number from the first and tell me how much your church has left. It’s just not going to work.

I know that someone else is going to comment here that all those women should just keep their legs together. And that person had better not try to tell me they’re a Catholic. Do you really want to publicly state that you think the only people who should be allowed to have sex, are the people who either have good insurance or an extra sixteen thousand dollars lying around? Twenty-four million people just don’t get to consummate their marriage anymore? Or are you going to tell me the poor should be denied the sacrament of matrimony? Or claim they should all be sterilized?

I’d also like to hear from the commentators who assured me that President Trump is very smart, has the nation’s best interests at heart, and will certainly figure out a way to repeal Obamacare without anyone losing their insurance. I’m waiting.

No pro-life person can support the Obamacare repeal as it stands today.

(image via Pixabay) 

 

 

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