Doctor supports repro act
To the Journal editor:
As a physician, I was grateful when, last fall, voters in our state expressed our belief in the right to control our own bodies, lives, and futures when we resoundingly passed Proposal 3.
This wasn’t a one-off, either, as polling shows, Michigan voters support a woman’s right to access abortion care at higher rate than the national average.
While I’m proud of the progress our Legislature has made in fulfilling the promise of Proposal 3 and protecting our right to abortion care, I believe there is more progress to be made to help ensure everyone has access to this right.
That’s why I’m calling for our Legislature to pass the Reproductive Health Act, to ensure that patients can realize their reproductive rights and freedom to make their own medical decisions.
The Reproductive Health Act will repeal Michigan’s outdated and medically unnecessary abortion restrictions, such as our targeted regulations on abortion providers (TRAP laws), that inhibit patients’ ability to access care. TRAP laws close abortion clinics, senselessly making it harder for patients in more rural areas like ours to find a provider.
Take a patient who lives in Houghton for example, they face a seven-hour drive to receive this safe and common procedure. This is a significant obstacle, and a costly one that might unfortunately prevent them from accessing this care altogether.
These restrictions do not align with the values of patients or, more broadly, Michigan voters who support the Reproductive Health Act. The passage of the Reproductive Health Act would help ensure that all women in Michigan can make their own decisions about their bodies.
Repealing unnecessary barriers would reflect the will of the people as well as our state constitution. It would ensure that patients can make their own health care decisions in consultation with their physicians, without political interference.
As one of many physicians concerned about patients’ ability to access the full spectrum of reproductive care, I am urging the Michigan Legislature to pass the Reproductive Health Act.
Dr. EILEEN SCHWEIKERT