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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Planned Parenthood in AZ

Here in Arizona a new law affecting abortion was supposed to go into effect yesterday. This law does a few things:
• Requires women to be informed of the risks of abortion in person by a physician at least 24 hours prior to performing the abortion
• Requires physicians to perform the abortions – not nurse practitioners
• Requires that a parental consent form be notarized
• Allows pharmacists and other health-care professionals to refuse to provide contraception

However, a Maricopa County Superior Court judge has prevented most of the law from going into effect, as Planned Parenthood is in the midst of a lawsuit seeking to overturn the new law. (see AZ Republic article)

Bryan Howard, CEO of Planned Parenthood explains his objections to the new law: “We have asserted since Day 1 in the Legislature that multiple provisions of this legislation would put the women in harm’s way and would threaten their health and well-being.” I don’t understand that. It seems to me that by helping women not make a hasty decision, but rather an informed choice and by providing a higher level of care (requiring physicians to perform the abortion) would serve to remove women from harms way and ensure their health and well being, as compared to the current practices.

I’m trying to really hard to think of any other medical operation where a person could just walk in the door without any prior consultation and have the operation done right there on the spot. I could be missing something, but no such scenario comes to mind. I think if that were done with any other medical procedure it would be considered irresponsible and unprofessional. It would become clear that anyone who tried to operate such a business was simply looking for a quick buck without properly considering the wellbeing of the patient. Yet this is the very thing that the abortion industry wishes to do. For that reason, Planed Parenthood’s argument that they are most concerned about the women’s health is difficult for me to believe. I think what they are most concerned about is making money, and these laws may reduce that potential. It’s just like any other industry that fights against new regulatory laws that cut into their profits.

(As far as my skepticism of true concern for women’s health, I am referring here to Planned Parenthood – not to all pro-choice individuals. I believe there are many compassionate pro-choice people whose primary concern really is the woman)