|July 22, 2011
A new serious threat to conscience rights has arisen.
On July 19, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) submitted its recommendations to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on the mandated “preventive services” for women under the new health care law, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).
The report’s mandated services include all FDA-approved birth control (such as the IUD, ‘morning-after’ pills, and the abortion-inducing drug Ella), and “education and counseling” to promote these among all “women of reproductive capacity.” If HHS accepts these recommendations, insurance plans will be required to cover these controversial practices. The deeply-held moral and religious convictions of many would be violated.
A defect in PPACA is that it lacks a conscience clause to prevent the Act from being used to suppress the rights of those who may have moral or religious objections to specific procedures.
It was to correct these problems that Reps. Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) and Dan Boren (D-OK) introduced the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act (H.R. 1179), a measure to ensure that those who participate in the health care system “retain the right to provide, purchase, or enroll in health coverage that is consistent with their religious beliefs and moral convictions.”
So far 24 other Representatives have co-sponsored this measure. At this time it is very important that more Representatives add their names to this bill. Please click on the link below to send an e-mail to your Representative. The message: “Please co-sponsor H.R. 1179, the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act. This measure ensures that the rights of conscience of all participants in our nation’s health care system will be respected.”
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