Morning Roundup: Virginia Targets Abortion Clinics

Virginia is poised to enact regulations that would close all but five abortion clinics in that state, a town in the Philippines now requires a prescription for condoms, Medicaid considers STD screenings for the elderly, and an anti-choice plea to John Boehner.

  • Yesterday, Virginia state senators voted to restrict access to first-trimester abortions by classifying any facility that performs more than five abortions a month as a hospital. The General Assembly has already approved the measure. Seventeen of the state’s 21 clinics would likely have to close if they could not conform to the new regulations, which include changes to the width of hallways and doorways, staffing requirements, and laundry and food facilities. Governor Bob McDonnell has said he will sign the bill into law.
  • A small town in the Philippines has passed an ordinance requiring condoms to be made available by prescription only. Within town limits, sex education is not permitted, nor is the sale, promotion, or endorsement of (heaven forbid!) hormonal contraception. The Catholic town declares that it,
    condemns the irresponsible and indiscriminate use of contraceptives as they undermine the solidarity of families by promoting premarital sex, giving rise to more fatherless children, more single mothers, more poverty, and more abortions when the contraceptives fail to prevent conception, and by causing a decline of legitimate marriages.

  • Health officials are weighing a decision to routinely cover sexually transmitted disease tests as preventative care under Medicare, the health care program for the elderly and disabled. The question is, why hasn’t this been routine all along?! Shocker – old people have sex!
  • An angry mob of anti-choice activists have sent a letter to Speaker John Boehner, demanding that he make defunding Planned Parenthood a priority. In fact, they believe it would be worth shutting down the government to avoid funding the nation’s largest provider of sexual health services to low and middle income Americans. “Defunding Planned Parenthood must be a non-negotiable in the Continuing Resolution and we urge you to accept nothing less than this outcome.”

Feb 25

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  • crowepps

    • $50 million in cuts to the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant that “supports state-based prenatal care programs and services for children with special needs.”

    • $1 billion in cuts to programs at the National Institutes of Health that support “lifesaving biomedical research aimed at finding the causes and developing strategies for preventing preterm birth.”

    • Nearly $1 billion in cuts to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for its preventive health programs, including to its preterm birth studies.

    And it doesn’t even make economic sense. A 2006 study by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies estimated that premature births cost the country at least $26 billion a year. At that rate, reducing the number of premature births by just 10 percent would save thousands of babies and $2.6 billion — more than the proposed cuts to the programs listed, programs that also provide a wide variety of other services.

  • arekushieru

    Crowepps, are you aware of any sites that cite links between higher incidences of HIV/Aids for premature, than full-term, babies? 

  • crowepps

    The treatment picture is jumping around so fast as they change and improve the protocols I would think it would be really difficult to do a proper study and you’d end up with a series of snapshots.


    It’s my understanding it’s possible with use of antiretrovirals for the mother to pretty much cut transmission to single digit percentagse, and knowing that, it would be totally unethical to do any kind of doubleblind random assignment.


    I can see a possibility, though, that if the prematurity is the result of an unexpectedly early emergency delivery, that appropriate dosages might not yet have been administered, and that might cause a higher rate.


    There’s also a possibility that if the mother is very sick, that labor might come early, and it would be difficult then to be sure whether the baby got HIV because it was premature or because its mother was very sick.

  • saltyc

    Never trust a pro-lifer. They believe that they are so right that outright hypocrisey is OK because they’re on God’s side anyway.

    From the link about the Virginia House vote:


    Those who oppose abortions insist the bill is about safeguarding health and safety standards at such medical facilities.


    The original version called on the state board of health to develop infection-prevention policies and regulations for disaster preparation and facility security at hospitals and nursing homes.

    Del. Kathy Byron, R-Campbell County, modified it in the House of Delegates on Monday

    Well, for a long time in this great land of ours abortion has been off-limits to the poor except for the most resourceful among them. Now us middle- and -upper class women will face further undue burdens and we can blame our own apathy. Hey, if we can pay for it we can do it, right? Not so much anymore.