Thursday, November 29, 2012
Is ideology or science driving decisions on reproduction-related drugs?
A recent radical recommendation by a pro-abortion medical group raises the question: Is ideology or science driving decisions on reproduction-related drugs?
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) now wants contraceptives sold without a prescription, age requirement or physician's exam or consultation about complications. Besides stated concerns about reducing pregnancies, ACOG also highlighted in its decision "the possibility of pharmacists inappropriately refusing to provide oral contraceptives." ACOG actively lobbies for abortion rights and to limit conscience rights for health professionals.
The Obama administration shares these political positions of ACOG yet earlier nixed the notion of moving contraceptives to drugstore shelves. Besides stated concerns about teen safety, moving contraceptives out of the pharmacy would undermine the administration's carefully politically calculated mandate that employers' health plans must pay for contraceptive prescriptions.
It is naïve to assume that ACOG or the administration completely separate deeply seated ideological and political dogmas from health policy decisions. This potential for personal persuasions to influence public health policy poses a threat to women's health and safety. Policy decisions on reproduction-related drugs must be probed by media, researched by consumers and vetted by experts well beyond the coterie of abortion advocates in ACOG and this administration.