The University of Vermont Medical Center recently changed its policy to allow elective abortions at its facilities.
Until last fall, the state medical group only allowed unborn babies to be aborted in cases of “medical necessity” at its facilities, the Burlington Free Press reports. That amounted to between 20 and 30 abortions per year, according to the report.
In September, however, the board of trustees unanimously approved a new policy to allow elective abortions of unborn babies, according to the AP. The medical group did not publicize the new policy, a recommendation of its medical staff.
The change especially is notable as abortion rates drop to historic lows across the United States and abortion facilities close due to a lack of business.
Dr. Ira Bernstein, medical director of the maternal fetal medicine fellowship training program at UVM, advocated for the pro-abortion policy. He said the medical group likely will do more abortions now that the policy has changed, but he would not speculate about a number.
Here’s more from the local news:
UVM Medical Center Board Chairwoman Allie Stickney said in a recent interview that the recommendation to change the hospital’s policy regarding abortions came from the medical staff.
The board decision to lift the prohibition on elective abortions was unanimous, according to Stickney.
“This whole process reflects how the board functions,” Stickney said. “The importance of this decision is to make us consistent in that the board of trustees does not approve which medical procedures are done or not done. In this case, abortion was an outlier.”
Stickney confirmed the policy of restricting abortions was established in 1972, prior to the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 22, 1973, in Roe v. Wade that a woman has a right to an abortion. She said that policy was reaffirmed by the board in 1984.
Many states are seeing abortion facilities close their doors as abortion rates drop and more women choose life for their unborn babies. Planned Parenthood, which does about one third of all abortions in the United States, closed 32 facilities in 2017 and opened only five. According to Operation Rescue, 49 abortion clinics closed last year while 19 opened.
Several admitted that their main reason for closing was because they were not making enough money aborting unborn babies anymore. Others were forced to close because of numerous health and safety violations.
A Bloomberg analysis of the trend in 2016 found similar results. A number of abortion facilities closed due to a lack of business or their inability to find doctors willing to perform abortions.
Seven states currently have just one abortion clinic left.
In 2014, abortions in the U.S. dropped below 1 million for the first time since 1975, the Guttmacher Institute reported. The pro-abortion research group admitted that pro-life efforts are contributing to the decline.
Abortion rates have been dropping steadily in the past decade as pro-lifers worked to pass a historic number of pro-life laws in states across the country. Pregnancy resource centers and sidewalk counselors also have been playing an integral role, offering pregnant and parenting families resources and information to empower them to choose life for their unborn babies.
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