Home Essential support Leading medical groups file amicus brief in Dobbs v. Jackson

Leading medical groups file amicus brief in Dobbs v. Jackson


Washington, DC – Yesterday, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), joined by 24 medical organizations, submitted an amicus brief to the United States Supreme Court in the case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a case challenging Mississippi law banning abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy for most individuals.

The amicus brief represents an unprecedented level of support from a diverse group of doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals, demonstrating the concrete medical consensus of opposition to restriction legislation abortion such as the law at the heart of Dobbs vs. Jackson.

The brief asks the court to recognize that Mississippi’s attempt to ban nearly all abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy is fundamentally at odds with the provision of safe and essential health care, with scientific evidence, and with medical ethics . In part, the brief states: “The ban dangerously limits the ability of women at or near 15 weeks gestation to get the health care they need: some will be forced to travel out of state to help them. get an abortion; others will attempt self-induced abortion; and still others will be forced to carry their pregnancies to term. Each of these results increases the likelihood of negative consequences to a woman’s physical and psychological health that could be avoided if care were available.

This ban is not based on medical evidence and threatens the health and well-being of pregnant people, with a disproportionate impact on people from communities of color; those who do not have sufficient financial resources; and those in rural areas without close proximity to safe and effective reproductive health care. By preventing clinicians from providing patients with necessary medical care, the ban represents flagrant interference in the patient-clinician relationship and undermines a clinician’s medical ethics by forcing them to choose between what is right for their patients and respect for an unscientific and harmful law.

“ACOG has a long history of working within the justice system to help protect constitutional rights and the patient-physician relationship. This law is an example of harmful legislative interference in the practice of medicine. ACOG hopes that the Supreme Court justices will appreciate the message contained in the amicus brief and uphold the legal precedent, ”said ACOG President J. Martin Tucker, MD, FACOG, speaking at ACOG name.

“Mississippi’s attempt to restrict the ability of physicians to provide safe and effective clinical care in consultation with their patients about their choice of health care options is a direct attack on the patient-physician relationship,” said Gerald E. Harmon, MD, president of the American Medical Association (AMA), who signed the amicus brief. “WADA will always stand up against unnecessary government intrusion into the medical examination room. Failure to repeal this unconstitutional law will not only severely compromise patients’ access to safe reproductive care, especially for our most marginalized patients, but will jeopardize the overall health of the nation. “

Additional quotes from matching signatories are below.

American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP): “One of the most dangerous aspects of Mississippi law is that it denies patients access to comprehensive, evidence-based care and prevents them from making decisions about their own health. All people of childbearing age deserve to have access to the full range of reproductive health options, and they should be able to rely on their doctor for advice. This law disrupts the patient-physician relationship, and with dangerous consequences, which is why the American Academy of Pediatrics has joined our partners in medicine in supporting its overthrow. Lee Savio Beers, MD, FAAP, President, American Academy of Pediatrics

American Association of Family Physicians (AAFP): “Patients need to be able to count on their physicians to help them make critical decisions about their personal health, including reproductive health. Laws that restrict these services put patients at risk and put those of us who provide – or even offer – medical care at risk. This is a law that would interfere with the confidential relationship between patients and their doctors. We strongly urge the courts to repeal this and similar laws to protect physicians and their patients. »Ada D. Stewart, MD, FAAFP, President of AAFP

American College of Nursing Midwives (ACSM): “Our role as midwives is to provide patient-centered, non-judgmental, evidence-based care regardless of the patient’s pregnancy intention,” said Cathy Collins-Fulea, President of ACNM, DNP, CNM, FACNM. “As providers of lifelong sexual and reproductive health care, the scope of practice of midwives encompasses the full spectrum of abortion care services, regardless of their direct involvement in the provision of abortion care. abortion. We have a responsibility to the people we serve to ensure that the right to self-determination and access to safe and effective abortion services, including counseling options, ultrasound, and care. nationwide comprehensive abortion and postabortion care are not hampered. “

American College of Physicians (ACP): “ACP strongly opposes any legislation that unnecessarily increases barriers to health care, including reproductive health services. Our patients have the right to bodily autonomy and to make healthcare decisions about matters that affect their personal and individual health. The decision that the court makes in this case could have far-reaching implications, access to care must be protected for our patients. “George M. Abraham, MD, FACP, FIDSA, President of the CAP

American Psychiatric Association (APA): “The American Psychiatric Association opposes laws that restrict the relationship between a patient and their physician,” said APA President Vivian B. Pender, MD. “Laws regulating abortion should be evidence-based and designed to improve women’s health, and they should preserve the patient-doctor relationship. “

American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM): “We are pleased to add the voices of the nation’s infertility experts to those who oppose this appalling law. Decisions about reproductive medicine services should be made between patients and their physicians. We don’t need politicians to stand between us and our patients. Hugh Taylor, MD, ASRM President

Association of Nurses in Women’s Health, Obstetrics and Neonatology (AWHONN): “The Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) supports this amicus curiae because our organization believes that any decision in reproductive health care is best made by the woman and the person giving birth in consultation with their provider. health care. These personal and private decisions are best made in a health care system whose providers respect the patient’s right to confidentiality and the values ​​and ethics of each individual. AWHONN opposes any legislation that limits a health care provider’s ability to counsel patients with safe, evidence-based, and essential reproductive care; limiting the ability to have these discussions threatens the health of pregnant patients. Jonathan Webb, MPH, MBA; Chairman and CEO, AWHONN

American Association of Medical Women (AMWA): “AMWA views the sanctity of the patient-physician relationship as non-negotiable, as does the provision of medical care that does not perpetuate health disparities. Restricting access or prohibiting legal and safe abortions will not end efforts to end pregnancies; these restrictions only deter medical procedures that could endanger a woman’s life. This consequence does not guarantee every woman equal and fair access to reproductive health care.

“At AMWA, as female physicians, we support and respect every woman’s right to self-determination as to whether and when she can become and remain pregnant. Much like we did in 2016, when AMWA defended the Supreme Court ruling by deciding in a 5: 3 decision to overturn Texas restrictions on abortion clinics, and, again in 2019, AMWA issued a statement against a very restrictive abortion law. spent in Alabama that made it a crime for doctors to treat women who sought to terminate a pregnancy.

“The American Medical Women’s Association urges an end to all legal means to limit a woman’s ability to seek medical care for her own mental and physical well-being. Medical decisions, including those related to reproductive care, should remain outside the realm of politics. Access to health care must be permitted without external pressures imposed by individuals or groups who are not qualified to make medical decisions. Jan Werbinski, MD, President of AMWA

Council of University Chairs of Obstetrics and Gynecology (CUCOG): “CUCOG is honored to join ACOG in this amicus brief to oppose interference in the patient-physician relationship and to support comprehensive, evidence-based reproductive health care. »Eve Espey, MD MPH, President of CUCOG

National Association of Women’s Health Nurse Practitioners (NPWH): “NPWH believes that everyone has the right to a full range of reproductive health services. The medical community has long agreed: this includes abortion care. NPWH supports providers of all walks of life and personal beliefs, committed to helping patients live their healthiest lives, within the context of their own personal experiences and beliefs. Our members ensure that every patient has the information they need to make their own decisions about their health, without judgment or stigma. Heather L. Maurer, MA, CAE, CEO of NPWH

North American Society of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology (NASPAG): “NASPAG respects the trusting and sacred relationship between healthcare providers and their patients. We firmly believe that this relationship should not be subject to restrictions imposed by outside influences and that health care providers should have the capacity to provide whatever health care they deem in the best interest of their patient.

OB / GYN Hospital Society (SOGH): “Women are more than the recipient for the birth of their children. They are individuals with heartbeats, values ​​and worth. We support those who work to maintain women’s access to safe reproductive health care in their communities. Kim Puterbaugh, MD, Chairman of SOGH and SOGH Board of Directors

The Family Planning Company (SFP): “The Society of Family Planning believes in fair and equitable abortion care based on science and, in simple terms, this dangerous law is not based on medical evidence. We are proud to join such a diverse group of physicians, nurses and other healthcare professionals in supporting the delivery of safe and essential healthcare. Tessa Madden, MD, MPH, President of SFP