Doctors and fertility specialists in Austin, Texas have come together to speak out against the abortion banning trigger law that has now come into place in Texas.
Together, they’re raising awareness about the impacts these new laws will have on their patients and aim to educate others on a nationwide level to take action
The group, called Doctors for Fertility, is made up of medical professionals who specialise in reproductive endocrinology. Their incredible work helps people to start families, yet they say that restricting choice by banning abortion is “dangerous for women and bad for doctors”.
Dr Lora Shahine, a reproductive endocrinologist at Pacific Northwest Fertility in Washington told CBS, “Doctors for Fertility is a collection of reproductive endocrinologists, or fertility specialists, around the country that have come together to help protect reproductive rights with education, increasing awareness, and political action”.
Dr Shahine argues that whilst she understands that some people are passionate about ending abortion, it isn’t something that should be simplified. Instead, it’s a serious medical decision.
“I have seen how a termination of pregnancy can actually save a woman’s life or treatment of a miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy can help someone preserve their fertility. The assumption that these laws are just banning elective terminations of pregnancy and that they’re not having an impact on all sorts of reproductive healthcare is just very short sighted.”
Another member of Doctors for Fertility, Dr Natalie Crawford of Fora Fertility tweeted, ‘We know this is not safe and we are not willing to have patient care compromised by politics without a fight”.
“When the consequence for providing essential medical care is a felony, you will see uncertainty and delay in care. Lawyers will get involved. Doctors will leave the state. Even getting care will become difficult. We must not allow this to happen silently.
Doctors for Fertility member, Dr Serena Chen is the director for reproductive medicine at the Institute for Reproductive Medicine and Science in New Jersey. She says, “It’s not just about women or women’s rights or politics. This is truly a medical issue”.
“What an average person may think of when it comes to abortion and what is medically defined as abortion are typically not the same. For that reason, doctors have said they worry the laws many states now have on the books directly conflict with a doctor’s ability to help someone end a dangerous or unviable pregnancy before the situation escalates.
“Waiting until that mom is really sick and about to die is exactly what we’re taught not to do in medical school.”
”The current laws being enacted in the United States in the wake of the overturning of Roe v Wade will not actually control abortion. These laws are interfering with normal and safe medical care for pregnant women and criminalizing doctors for good doctoring. This is not an isolated women’s issue. It’s a human issue. This is a healthcare crisis.”
“We are already seeing that peoples’ voices are making a difference. That’s part of what we want to do at Doctors for Fertility, is give everyone a gathering place to amplify their voice.”
Find out more about Doctors for Fertility here and to read more about Roe vs Wade here