Friday, February 27, 2009

Rescinding HHS Regulation

I blogged before about the horrible midnight HHS regulations that President Bush tried to enact in the last months of his presidency. Today, there's good news. President Obama's administration has begun the process of rescinding the regulation that were supposed to "protect" doctors and other medical professionals from being "forced" to administer abortions or birth control if it went against their conscience. The regulation would've actually restricted women's access to abortion or birth control, giving the federal government the power to cut off funding to entire institutions that employ doctors or nurses who object to procedures like birth control and abortion but the institutions themselves conduct them.

This regulation was misguided, allowing sweeping government intervention to limit women's access to health care while pretending to make the controversy about individual right to religion. The right to religion is already protected under numerous provisions of the law. The regulation Bush proposed wasn't about protecting freedoms or even about good public policy. It was about finding ways to limit women's access to reproductive health care. It specifically targeted the kinds of care that only women receive. The Bush administration, in other words, wasn't rushing to make a "conscience" rule for the distribution of Viagra.

The Obama administration is slowly seeking to undo some of the most egregious policies the Bush administration pursued on reproductive health. That is, except for abstinence-only programming.

1 comment:

YaleDiv said...

Rev. Debra Haffner, "As a religious leader, I applaud the President's decision. I can appreciate that some physicians, nurses, pharmacists and so on do not want to participate in delivering sexual health services -- I just don't think they should work for federally funded programs that have as their mandate to deliver them. Blessings for one more step forward from the dark anti-reproductive health policies of the last Administration."
Rev. Debra Haffner
http://debrahaffner.blogspot.com

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