American College of Nurse-Midwives Applauds SCOTUS Strike Down of Louisiana Abortion Law
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 30, 2020
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The American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) commends the United States Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a Louisiana law that would have forced closure of all but one of the state’s abortion providers. The 5-4 ruling in June Medical Services v. Russo reverses the 2014 state law requiring that abortion providers have admitting privileges at local hospitals. The court stated that the requirement creates an unconstitutional undue burden for patients seeking an abortion. Last year, ACNM joined the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and other maternal health stakeholder organizations on both a cert petition stage amicus brief and a merits-stage amicus brief regarding the case.
“We applaud the court’s decision to ensure unconditional access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services, including keeping abortion safe and legal for the people and families midwives serve,” stated ACNM President Cathy Collins-Fulea, DNP, CNM, FACNM. “There is no medical benefit to mandating hospital admitting privileges as a requirement for clinicians to provide abortion care. Imposing this requirement on an abortion care provider does nothing to improve the health or safety of a patient, but instead seeks to restrict access to objective evidence-based abortion care services. Furthermore, like other aspects of our nation’s maternal health care system, laws like this impact Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) at a disproportionately high rate and perpetuate institutional racism. Many are working to understand the true impact of our nation’s sordid past and how much of our culture is steeped in racism, including who has access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health care services and how that care is provided.”
ACNM is committed to ensuring access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health care services that are readily available, affordable, and guided by objective evidence-based information. ACNM also stands with midwives who provide abortions and work in abortion care. We strongly object to legislative and regulatory efforts that create unnecessary challenges, pose needless restrictions, or otherwise reduce access to quality sexual and reproductive health care services, including abortion care. These initiatives negatively impact the people we serve and the midwives involved in this work. Laws that criminalize patients who seek abortion care create a dynamic in which people cannot feel safe accessing this essential life-saving care. Providers should never have to exist in an environment where the provision of evidence-based care is a criminal act.
With nearly 7,000 members, the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) is the professional organization that represents the 12,000+ certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) and certified midwives (CMs) in the United States. ACNM promotes excellence in midwifery education, clinical practice, and research. With roots dating to 1929, our members are primary care providers for women throughout the lifespan, with a special emphasis on pregnancy, childbirth, and gynecologic and reproductive health. ACNM provides research, administers and promotes continuing education programs, establishes education and clinical practice standards, and creates liaisons with state and federal agencies and members of Congress to increase the visibility and recognition of midwifery-led care.
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