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Bush's Attack on Women’s Health Is Bad Medicine

On August 22, 2008, the Bush administration proposed a regulation to allow providers to withhold critical health care information.

The proposed regulation jeopardizes a patient’s right to know her options. This rule would completely disrupt the nation’s health care delivery system at a time when more and more families are uninsured and under economic assault. Here’s why:

  • The HHS proposed regulation is intentionally vague. By leaving the term “abortion” undefined, the regulation creates a dangerous space for ideology and political views to be inserted into medical practices, emergency rooms, and clinics all across the country, and when that happens, women suffer.
  • The proposed regulation complicates the law instead of clarifying the law. The new regulation lets health care providers define abortion, which could threaten broader reproductive health care, including contraception.
  • The fact that HHS took out the definition of abortion that was included in an earlier draft is a red herring because this proposed regulation — even more than the previous leaked version — leaves health care services and information open to personal interpretation and political agendas.
  • This rule will allow anti-choice extremists to receive federal funds for so-called "crisis pregnancy centers" — anti-choice facilities whose purpose is to deceive and dissuade women from accessing birth control and abortion information and services.

This is just one more example of how the Bush administration puts politics in the exam room. Planned Parenthood will not stand by and watch the Bush administration deny quality, affordable health care and accurate information to women, and you can help us take action.

Now that the new rule has been issued officially, we need you to speak out during the official 30-day comment period before the rule can go into effect. Please submit a comment to the Department of Health and Human Services before the official comment period ends on September 25.


Press Statements & News Releases

Already, the public has reacted strongly in opposition to a previous similar draft HHS rule.  Members from professional community groups across the country drafted letters urging HHS Secretary Leavitt to reject that rule.  These groups include

Medical Professionals


Members of Congress

Newspapers across the country also ran editorials and columns speaking out against the previous draft rule.

Published: 08.08.08