Standing Up for Women's Reproductive Rights

Recently, I sent an open letter to President Obama expressing my concern over abortion restrictions to the high-risk insurance pools established through the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act.

When the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act (PPAHC) was passed, I felt that we, as a nation, were establishing the beginning of a caring, and needed, response to a serious abuse inherent to the health insurance delivery system. But, the recent announcement applicable to this Act by the Obama administration, prohibiting abortions excepting cases of rape, incest and life endangerment to the mother, carves out a legal medical procedure that has serious implications for a population that is already medically compromised.

I strongly oppose this decision because it limits the rights of women to access a safe and legal health care procedure.

If this decision is not reversed then the only remaining option for women in these insurance pools is to pay for the costs out-of-pocket. This is an outrageous solution. The women who would benefit from the high-risk pools are sick, in desperate need of insurance relief for their staggering medical expenses and least able to pay for an abortion from individual funds. It is also important to note that women in this high-risk category would, because of their medical conditions, require abortion services that would be more costly than the lower charges usually incurred by healthy women.

I feel it is my responsibility to question this decision, which puts vulnerable women at increased risk of medical problems and does not consider abortion care for health emergencies.

I have urged President Obama to reconsider this policy and to re-affirm his commitment to broaden health care insurance without excluding at-risk women from equal access to legal health care procedures. I hope you will join me in voicing your opposition to this Act.

Attached, you will find my letter to President Obama.