Human Interest

A cystic fibrosis diagnosis was supposed to end his life. Instead, he’s thriving.

cystic fibrosis

During the House Committee on Oversight and Reform hearing on Thursday regarding “Examining State Efforts to Undermine Access to Reproductive Health Care,” Rep. Chip Roy of Texas took a moment to share the story of one of his staff members, whom doctors suggested should have been aborted, along with his twin brother.

“In the winter of 1996, a couple went in for a checkup,” Roy said. “They were excited. They were recently informed they had twins.” But that routine checkup took an unexpected turn when the doctor diagnosed the preborn baby boys with cystic fibrosis, a genetic condition. He (wrongly) informed the parents that the twins would die within hours of their birth.

“‘I would recommend termination,’ said the doctor. The couple said the first thing that came into their mind was, ‘No,’ and walked out,” Roy explained. “They chose life.”

He continued, “Those twins would grow up to become excellent men. I know this because Jonah works for me. Right there. He is one of my staffers.”

No doctor can predict the kind of life a preborn child will have, regardless of their diagnosis. Assumptions can be made, along with educated guesses, but in this particular case, the doctor’s assessment wasn’t even an educated guess. He proved he knew nothing about cystic fibrosis. By 1996, when Jonah was in the womb, hope was on the rise in the cystic fibrosis community. The gene that causes cystic fibrosis when mutation occurs had been identified in 1989, and the median age of survival had risen from youth to late teenage years. But many people with cystic fibrosis born in the 1980s — and told they would die as a teen — are still alive today, thanks to major progress in the treatment of cystic fibrosis. Jonah, now about age 19 or 20, based on Roy’s story, has definitely proven that the doctor who said he would die at birth was very, very wrong.

READ: CRTV podcast host Allie Stuckey stuns Congress with arguments against abortion

After pointing out Jonah to the committee members, Roy highlighted the fact that Planned Parenthood is not about health care, but abortion. He spoke about how much money the abortion corporation is given from the government, and how the organization refused to separate their abortion business from their limited health care services in order to continue to receive Title X funding.

“My point is simply this,” he said. “[…] we can provide health care in better ways than allowing an organization like Planned Parenthood which takes unborn babies, puts them in plastic bags, and throws them in garbage bins to be the center of health care provision for women.”

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