On March 18, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recommended that all elective surgeries as well as non-essential medical, surgical, and dental procedures be delayed to mitigate the spread of coronavirus and properly allocate medical resources. In response, several states have issued orders temporarily halting medical procedures that are not immediately necessary.
While most healthcare providers have complied and sent their personal protective equipment to hospitals for essential medical needs, abortion businesses have refused to followed suit.
Instead, abortionists claim that all abortion “is time-sensitive and essential health care that has a profound impact on a person’s health and life, which is why it is a protected as a constitutional right.”
In Oklahoma, where elective surgeries and minor medical procedures have been postponed, two abortion clinics and one doctor have sued the state, demanding an exception. Today, Alliance Defending Freedom filed an amicus brief supporting Oklahoma on behalf of several religious groups.
There are a few problems with abortion advocates’ claims that abortion is “essential” and should get special treatment:
1. Isn’t abortion a choice?
Abortion advocates have long held that women have a right to choose. Understanding surgical abortion as a choice highlights the fact that it is an elective, non-essential medical procedure. By continuing to perform surgical abortions, abortionists are directing personal protective equipment away from hospitals and health care providers that are on the frontlines of combatting this pandemic. Further, abortion facilities are putting their patients and employees at higher risk of contracting the virus by continuing non-essential office visits and procedures.
2. These state orders, like Oklahoma’s, do not single out abortion facilities.
These orders put a temporary stop to all elective medical procedures that require the use of desperately needed personal protective equipment. Surgical abortions are among the many other elective procedures that have been temporarily halted in order to direct resources toward combating the spread of COVID-19.
3. Abortion facilities are not above the law.
Just because abortions are legal in this country, courtesy of Roe v. Wade, does not mean abortionists get special treatment. The many other elective procedures that have been put on hold are also legal, but you don’t see those doctors demanding an exemption.
Our government officials are working tirelessly to slow the spread of this virus and save as many lives as possible. This is not the time to sow seeds of disunity within our communities. It is time for the abortion industry to put the well-being our of country above petty politics and work alongside government officials to ensure the safety of our communities.
Teresa Haney is a Legal Secretary for the Center for Life at Alliance Defending Freedom