Catholic Medical Association: No Health Care Bill Better Than Pro-Abortion One

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 22, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Catholic Medical Association: No Health Care Bill Better Than Pro-Abortion One

by Steven Ertelt Editor
September 22
, 2009

Washington, DC ( — The Catholic Medical Association has released a new analysis of the health care debate in Congress and concludes that no health care bill is better than one containing abortion funding. The analysis comes at a time when President Barack Obama is relying on left-wing Catholic groups to build support for the bills.

CMA says there is a "crisis, not only in health-care financing and delivery, but in the health-care reform process itself."

There is an "opportunity and obligation" to improve the health care system, but CMA says there must be an "ethical" response.

"But there also exists a real danger that misguided legislation could make our current problems even worse. This is a critical time for Catholics to work together to formulate solutions based upon authentic moral, social, and economic principles," the group says in a new statement released yesterday.

One of the key problems the Catholic Medical Association notes is that the various health care legislation in Congress leaves it up to the Obama administration to set abortion funding policy.

"Bills passed out of committees in the House and Senate this summer rely heavily on the federal government to dictate solutions," it said. "This approach, moreover, is dangerous given the current Administration’s repeated failures to accord proper respect for the dignity of human life."

CMA cites Obama’s pro-abortion record as a reason to distrust placing abortion policy on abortion funding in health care in his administration’s hands.

"Reversing the Mexico City Policy and providing federal funding for human embryonic stem-cell research are only the best known of a whole series of proposals denying respect for human life," the CMA physicians say. "In addition, the Administration seems intent upon institutionalizing such policies making it difficult, if not impossible, to overturn them in the future."

CMA also has problems with the end-of-life care discussed in the bills, the debate about "death panels" notwithstanding.

"While there have been some misunderstandings about provisions relating to end-of-life consultations; serious concerns remain regarding funding for care of the seriously ill and dying," the group said.

"All are aware that a significant percentage of health-care spending occurs in the last months of a person’s life, and we are facing a demographic tsunami of aging baby boomers. Giving the federal government the power, and primary responsibility, to contain medical expenditures could threaten the provision of medical care to the most vulnerable, the elderly and chronically ill," it adds.

The group says it is calling on all Catholics, Catholic organizations and Catholic lawmakers to recognize that decisions about the health care bills should be guided based on the Catholic Church’s pro-life teachings.

Otherwise, CMA says it would be better to not pass any health care legislation than a bill that opens the door to promoting abortions and euthanasia.

"We must ensure that well-intentioned efforts to bring about ‘change’ are not exploited to create a federally controlled system that promises health care for all, but creates an oppressive bureaucracy hostile to human life and to the integrity of the patient-physician relationship," it said.

"It would be better to forgo long-needed changes in health-care financing
and delivery in the short-term if these would lead to a long-term, systemic policy regime that is inimical to respect for life," it concludes.

Louis C. Breschi, M.D., the president of the pro-life Catholic medical group, is the author of the position statement.

Related web sites:
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