Contrary to popular belief, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) is not an unbiased source regarding abortion. The group actually promotes abortion and opposes pro-life legislation. So when Facebook’s “fact checker” — the “International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN),” a unit of the Poynter Institute, selected Health Feedback to “fact check” the claim that abortion is never medically necessary — using two abortionists — it was surprising that the supposedly “non-partisan” and “fair” fact checker would choose to update its post not with balanced information but with a “clarification” from the pro-abortion ACOG on September 3, 2019 — days after the original August 30th fact check. Health Feedback has revised its fact check multiple times, adding (and in some cases, removing) statements:
Oddly, when ACOG is addressing pregnancy in general and not promoting abortion, its communications sound strangely similar to the claims of Live Action and Lila Rose. Rose “made clear that preterm delivery is different than abortion” in a fact-checked Young America’s Foundation video, saying:
“… [A]bortion – which is defined as – the direct and intentional killing of an embryo – a fetus – a baby in the womb – is not a medical treatment. And, what I mean to say then is when you are treating a mother who has a high risk pregnancy – who has complications – going in there to directly kill that child is not going to in any way solve her problem, help her heal, be a treatment for what she’s experiencing.
Now, you could perhaps do an early delivery if she’s experiencing preeclampsia or if she has a very severe condition that you need to deliver that baby early. But, in that situation you don’t go in there with a needle or forceps to destroy that baby before birth. You give that baby a fighting chance. And that is not abortion.
The ACOG is heavily promoting a book for sale on Facebook, titled Your Pregnancy and Childbirth Month to Month, 6th edition According to the ACOG website, the most recent edition of the book (sixth edition) was published in 2015. The book contains information for women seeking a healthy pregnancy and delivery. It also contains information on potential pregnancy complications and details how they might be managed. Below are a few examples from the book.
As it turns out, it appears that in the pages we reviewed, the ACOG uses language similar to Lila Rose and Live Action in their videos. These pages shown below do not appear to promote the direct and intentional killing of the child (abortion) as a solution to the health issues mentioned by Facebook’s abortionist “fact checkers.”
Preeclampsia/Gestational hypertension or Preeclampsia/HELLP syndrome
“When preeclampsia occurs during pregnancy, the baby may need to be delivered right away, even if he or she is not fully grown…” writes the ACOG. “The goal of treatment is to limit complications for you and to deliver the healthiest baby possible…” (pages 411-415 Chapter 22: Hypertension and Preeclampsia)
“Once you reach 37 weeks of pregnancy, it may be recommended that you have your baby. Labor may need to be induced…. You may need to have a baby earlier…. If you have preeclampsia with severe features, you most likely will be treated in the hospital… (pg. 414) You may be transferred to a hospital with a special high risk maternity unity and a high level neonatal intensive care unit … Corticosteroids may be given to help the baby’s lungs mature…. If your baby’s condition worsens, prompt delivery is needed.” (page 411-415, Chapter 22: Hypertension and Preeclampsia)
This is reiterated on the ACOG website, where ACOG writes, “If preeclampsia occurs during pregnancy, your baby may need to be delivered right away, even if he or she is not fully grown. Preterm babies have an increased risk of serious complications. Some preterm complications last a lifetime and require ongoing medical care. Babies born very early also may die.” (emphasis added)
ACOG later answers, “How is preeclampsia with severe features managed?”
Preeclampsia with severe features usually is treated in the hospital. If you are at least 34 weeks pregnant, it often is recommended that you have your baby as soon as your condition is stable. If you are less than 34 weeks pregnant and your condition is stable, it may be possible to wait to deliver your baby. Corticosteroids may be given to help the baby’s lungs mature, and you most likely will be given medications to help reduce your blood pressure and to help prevent seizures. If your condition or the baby’s condition worsens, prompt delivery will be needed.
According to the March of Dimes:
HELLP syndrome is a serious pregnancy complication that affects the blood and liver. HELLP stands for these blood and liver problems:
- H–Hemolysis. This is the breakdown of red blood cells. Red blood cells carry oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body.
- EL–Elevated liver enzymes. High levels of these chemicals in your blood can be a sign of liver problems.
- LP–Low platelet count. Platelets are little pieces of blood cells that help your blood clot. A low platelet count can lead to serious bleeding.
HELLP syndrome is rare. It happens in about 1 to 2 of 1,000 pregnancies. HELLP usually develops in the third trimester of pregnancy, but it sometimes develops in the week after a baby is born. If you have HELLP syndrome, the liver may bleed, causing pain in your chest or belly. It’s is a medical emergency that needs quick treatment. Without early treatment, 1 out of 4 women (25 percent) with HELLP has serious complications. Without any treatment, a small number of women die.
But, even at the March of Dimes, abortion is not mentioned as a medical treatment for HELLP:
“The goal is to prolong the pregnancy as much as possible to give the baby enough time to grow and develop while also monitoring for severe bleeding in the mother…. You may receive drugs… to help the baby’s lungs and other organs develop in case of a preterm delivery…. If you have other medical conditions, fetal complications or additional problems with the placenta… delivery may take place earlier…” pages 507- 510 (ACOG Chapter 29: Placental Problems)
“If the placenta is not providing enough nutrients and oxygen for the baby, it may be decided that early delivery is better for the baby than allowing the pregnancy to continue. Early delivery may also be needed to prevent further complications for the pregnant women.” (ACOG page 409, Chapter 22: Hypertension and Preeclampsia)
“If your condition remains stable, early delivery of the baby (before 39 weeks of pregnancy) usually is not necessary. If complications develop, it may be necessary to deliver the baby early….” (ACOG page 410, Chapter 22: Hypertension and Preeclampsia)
According to the ACOG’s website, “Hyperemesis gravidarum is the most severe form of nausea and vomiting of pregnancy. It occurs in up to 3% of pregnancies. This condition may be diagnosed when a woman has lost 5% of her prepregnancy weight and has other problems related to dehydration (loss of body fluids). Women with hyperemesis gravidarum need treatment to stop their vomiting and restore body fluids. Sometimes treatment in a hospital is needed.”
They go on to state, “If diet and lifestyle changes do not help your symptoms, or if you have severe nausea and vomiting of pregnancy, medical treatment may be needed. If other medical conditions are ruled out, certain medications can be given to treat nausea and vomiting of pregnancy….”
But the ACOG does not suggest abortion here:
In the book, ACOG states in part, “If… diagnosed you may be given medication to help control your nausea and vomiting. If you have a severe case… you may need to receive fluids intravenously.” (ACOG page 42-43, Chapter 2: Month 1 and 2)
The ACOG claims abortion is medically necessary when advocating for abortion — but when it comes to talking about pregnancy (assumed “wanted” pregnancies), it seems abortion — at least on the pages reviewed above regarding treatment for complications — simply isn’t emphasized. Instead, other efforts, such as early delivery, are recommended to preserve the lives of both mother and child — just as they were in Live Action’s “fact checked” videos.
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