The American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ABOG) is threatening the livelihoods of countless OB/GYNs for disseminating any alleged “misinformation” regarding abortion.
ABOG released a statement last week, purporting to address “medical misinformation.” The original statement released in 2021 was regarding COVID-19, but the Board has expanded it to include abortion.
The dissemination of misinformation and disinformation not only involves COVID-19, but is a threat to the access to and the ability to provide legal and safe evidence-based comprehensive reproductive health care, including contraception and abortion. Opinions publicized by OB GYNs about COVID-19, reproductive health care, and abortion should reflect the specialty’s commitment to scientific and clinical excellence and to the needs of our patients.
Misinformation and disinformation about contraception and abortion can create false narratives about essential safe practices in the specialty. In addition, false or misleading information from board-certified medical professionals can also be used to advocate for legislation, regulations, criminal code, and health policy. ABOG considers the dissemination of misinformation and disinformation that may threaten the health of the patients who place their trust in its diplomates to be a violation of medical professionalism.
They further added that they will monitor reports of misinformation, and that “[e]ligibility to gain or maintain ABOG certification may be lost.”
The American Association of Pro-Life OBGYNs (AAPLOG) wasted no time in responding, both rebutting claims of disinformation and assuring members they will be supported. In an e-mail, AAPLOG pointed out that Dr. Ingrid Skop, one of their members, testified in front of Congress about why greater data collection on morbidity and mortality from abortion is needed; this is in line with a report from the Harvard Maternal Health Task Force. However, AAPLOG said a pro-abortion politician responded not only by disagreeing, but with what could be taken as a threat, with the politician stating, “I’d like to first remind all OBGYNs that the American Board of OBGYNs has recently warned that spreading medical misinformation can result in loss of board certification.”
AAPLOG further assured pro-life OB/GYNs that they will fight for their members.
“The American Association of Pro-Life OB-GYNs (AAPLOG) is disappointed at the attempts to discredit an experienced member of the medical community working to raise awareness on the lack of data collection surrounding abortion complications in the United States.
The facts of the situation are clear – reliable, accurate data surrounding abortion complications and procedures in the US is not available, and ignoring quality data from around the world that shows that abortions cause significant complications for women and worsens maternal mortality is scientifically irresponsible and places our patients at greater danger.
It is time that our country stop ignoring the realities of abortion procedures by refusing to collect data, and instead treat the health of women and their children with the respect it deserves.
AAPLOG is closely monitoring this potential abuse of the term “misinformation” and its effect on our membership. We have the evidence-based high ground. If you are accused of “disseminating misinformation” because of your pro-life position, please alert us immediately at firstname.lastname@example.org. We have your back on this one.
Women do not deserve to have the reality of abortion hidden from them in the name of an ideological agenda. Worse, doctors should not have to fear losing their board certification merely because they do not hold to a specific ideology. Losing certification does not mean one has lost their medical license, but it can make it extremely difficult to find work. Being board-certified guarantees the practitioner has met competency requirements in their specialty; by revoking that certification for pro-life OB/GYNs, ABOG is engaging in viewpoint discrimination, essentially saying that opposing the elective homicide of undelivered children makes a doctor incompetent and incapable of practicing obstetrics and gynecology in a professional and capable manner.
AAPLOG said this “egregious oversight” is based in ideology, not in fact.
“It is questionable whether or not ABOG has any legal right to rescind the board certification of its membership over ideological disagreements about abortion, much less to forbid membership from discussing the research-backed effects of abortion on women,” AAPLOG CEO Donna Harrison said in an e-mailed press release. “AAPLOG stands behind its members and is taking the actions necessary to ensure that our members can continue to give fully-informed consent to patients and talk about the effects of abortion on women without threat or intimidation.”
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