Jack Hitt interviewed a number of abortionists for his article, “Who Will Do Abortions Here?” One common theme running through the article and Hitt’s interviews is the stigma the medical community has against those who commit abortions. Often, this stigma arises from the knowledge that most abortionists are not good doctors.
In Hitt’s article, one abortionist says, “A lot of doctors don’t want partners who perform the service.”(1)
Hitt explains that the explainable reluctance of doctors to work with those who do abortions is one reason why 90% of all abortions take place in freestanding abortion facilities and not in doctor’s offices or hospitals. Hitt says:
This phenomenon has played a concrete role in moving abortion off the main street of prestigious American medicine for the half hidden back alley from where it once emerged.(2)
There is a high complication rate among abortionists, and many abortionists have malpractice suits and tarnished records. One need only look at AbortionDocs.com to see how often abortionists have botched procedures or worked in filthy conditions.
One OB/GYN who is pro-choice but does not perform abortions himself says:
It’s seen as the dirty work of our field. The sad truth is that the people who moonlight at the clinics are grade-B doctors. They’re not the cream of the crop. And it’s not because they’re committed. It’s because they can’t find steady work.(3)
Abortionists are the rejects of medicine, those who can’t make a living any other way.
An abortionist currently in practice confirms this:
It’s true that abortion providers are perceived as not very good doctors – that they have no alternative so they do abortions, that they cannot earn a living any other way.(4)
Not only do a great number of abortion doctors have bad records, but many of them also treat patients horribly. A recent Live Action article collected stories of abortionists who were abusive towards patients and staff.
Abortion is so stigmatized in the medical community that doctors don’t want to be associated with it in any way. One resident says:
I was thinking of doing a study last year. I wanted to look at different gestational ages and then compare them to outcomes among different types of abortion. But then I started to think, well, gosh, wait a minute, I don’t want to end up being known as the abortion person – do you know what I mean?(5)
Even doing research related to abortion can stigmatize a doctor.
Dr. Jane Hodgson, described by Hitt as an “abortion pioneer” who performed abortions for years, says:
You can look at any medical meeting of any kind in recent history. You will not find a single paper given on abortion.(6)
There have been similar statements about the nature of abortionists and the abortion industry in other sources.
In the book, “Abortion and the Private Practice of Medicine,” an abortionist says:
I hate doing [abortions], but I do them every once in a while. But the real reason we try to avoid them is that I don’t want to be known as a local abortionist. I want to be known as a doctor who loves mommies and their babies. I don’t care what is said, there’s a stigma attached to doing abortions.(7)
Another abortionist says:
Many of my colleagues, if they know at all what I do … think that abortion work is for doctors who can’t do anything else. They would rather not know about me or our patients, preferring to imagine that none of this goes on either for me or them.
Abortionist Dr. Nancy Stanwood explains:
There still persists to this day almost 40 years after Roe this perception that any doctor who would do abortions on a regular basis…those who make it a part of their integrated practice — that they must be quacks or bad doctors. There’s this stigma of the abortionist that — two generations later — still looms large.
An article in Glamour magazine reported:
[Hospital administrators say] abortion is a sleazy and offensive procedure… The doctor who does abortions – even if they are only a small part of her practice – is known as an abortionist… This label is the kiss of death for any professional hopes a doctor might have.(8)
The reason why legitimate doctors consider abortionists to be bad doctors is because, for the most part, they are. After all, why would a doctor want to work in such a stigmatized field? It is often because they can’t make a living any other way. Abortion work is often the field of medicine where a doctor can keep injuring women and still stay in practice, often due to a lack of state inspections or regulations that could protect women.
Here are a few examples.
- Dr. A. James Whitmore III lost his license to practice in two states after botching multiple abortions.
- Abortionist Alberto Hodari had no less than 50 lawsuits against him when he stopped committing abortions.
- Abortionist Abu Hyatt botched seven abortions, killed at least one woman and mutilated a third-trimester preborn baby who was born without an arm.
- Abortionist Bolivar Escobedo botched multiple abortions and had his license taken away after killing a woman.
- Abortionist Brian Finkel was convicted and sent to jail for sexually assaulting multiple women in his abortion facility.
- Abortionist Scott Blumstein botched an abortion so badly that the woman had to have a hysterectomy.
- Abortionist Hamid Sheikh had his license suspended for botched abortions and Medicaid fraud. Conditions in his abortion clinic were described as “hellish.”
- Abortionist Warren Hern is currently being sued for a botched abortion that left a mother sterile.
- Abortionist Kermit Gosnell is in jail for snipping the necks of babies who survived his abortions and for the death of a woman in his care.
- Abortionist LeRoy Carhart continues to commit abortions, despite a constant flow of women who are being sent to the hospital from his facility.
The list goes on, and on, and on.
It is clear that legitimate doctors want little do to with abortionists, who are often the rejects of medicine, as they should be.
- Jack Hitt “Who Will Do Abortions Here” in Robert M. Baird and Stuart E. Rosenbaum The Ethics of Abortion (New York: Prometheus Books, 2001)
- Jonathan B Imber, Abortion and the Private Practice of Medicine(New Haven: Yale University Press, 1986)
- Glamour, October 1993, Quoted in Mark Crutcher “Access: the Key to Pro-Life Victory” Life Dynamics Incorporated