Women’s health care and reproductive rights are being jeopardized in legislatures across the country. These legislative assaults come in many forms and from many directions. Nearly all of them rely on ideology, not good science.
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) stands firmly for access to family planning and FDA-approved contraceptives as basic and essential components of health care for women. As physicians for women’s health care, ob-gyns see firsthand the harm that ideology-based laws have on the health of women and their families. Less access to family planning and contraception increases unintended pregnancies and harms families and our society.
Because we stand firmly for access to needed care, we also stand firmly against legislative interference with the patient-physician relationship. There’s only room for two people in our exam rooms: the patient and the caregiver. Lawmakers get in the way of good patient care when they try to force women to undergo transvaginal ultrasounds or other unnecessary medical procedures; when they try to close health clinics for specious reasons; or when they try to tell women that legislators know best.
Lawmakers can and do play a vitally productive and important role in ensuring public health. Lawmakers should not, however, attempt to define, mandate, or prohibit medical practices or require doctors to read a government script to their patients.
As my ob-gyn colleagues visit with state legislators across the country this year, our message is simple:
Partnership with lawmakers, yes. Legislative interference, no.
A message from the American Congress of Obstetricians and
Gynecologists, an ally of the This Is Personal campaign