The nation's largest faith-based association of physicians, the Christian Medical Association (CMA, www.cmda.org), today lamented the Supreme Court's ruling on the Affordable Care Act, saying the decision threatens health care choice and "sounds an alarm across the country to people with faith-based and pro-life convictions."
CMA CEO Dr. David Stevens observed, "The high court unfortunately could not muster enough justices willing to uphold the Constitutional principles of limited government and separation of powers that have guided our nation since its founding. This ruling sounds an alarm across the country to people with faith-based and pro-life convictions, to poor patients who depend on physicians with these values and to all patients who value choosing their own health care.
"Who will stop U.S. Health and Human Services political appointees from forcing employers and individuals with faith-based convictions to subsidize abortion or life-ending contraceptives and imposing huge 'faith fines' on those of us who resist? What will stop this administration, with its radical pro-abortion agenda, from further undermining conscience rights and pursuing policies that effectively force out of medicine physicians with life-honoring convictions? Who will keep government panels from effectively denying physicians and patients choice about what are the most effective and appropriate medicines, surgeries and treatments?
"While court battles will continue over other aspects of the Affordable Care Act not addressed in today's decision, we have learned that we cannot simply rest in the hope that our courts will uphold Constitutional principles. We call on Congress to turn back this law's assault on our freedoms and restore American values and Constitutional principles in health care. Repeal this overreaching law and enact bipartisan, targeted health care reforms.
"Congress should demonstrate a new respect for the proper limits of government power, listen to the people and pursue a careful, measured approach of targeted reforms, including:
- protecting patient access to care by enacting strong conscience protections;
- providing a safety net for the poor and patients with preexisting conditions;
- containing the cost of health insurance by opening up competition across state lines;
- reducing cost and keeping physicians in medicine by reforming malpractice lawsuits and reducing bureaucracy; and by
- rooting out and prosecuting Medicare and Medicaid fraud.
CMA Executive VP Dr. Gene Rudd noted, "Compassionate and common-sense reforms like these offer hope for a health care system that cares for the most vulnerable among us while containing costs to make health insurance affordable for an ever-increasing number of Americans. It will also ensure that conscientious physicians who still hold to high ethical standards such as the Hippocratic oath will be able to remain in medicine and care for this increasing number of patients."