A central reason given in Roe v. Wade for the legalization of abortion was the claim that, “Abortion is safer than childbirth.” Though the claim has no basis in fact, the British Obstetric & Gynecology College has now recommended women be told that claim.
Reporting about abortions and their complications is not accurate, explains Dr. Jack Wilke. The comparison of abortion deaths to childbirth deaths is not only comparing apples with oranges, but has so many qualifying factors and unknowns that any type of reasonably accurate comparison is all but impossible.
A perfect example is the Kansas City Aid for Women clinic, that doesn’t even try to use current data. Their online informed consent says, “First trimester procedures are safer than carrying to full-term…The mortality rate with legal abortions is 1 in 160,000…maternal death [is] 14 death per 100,000 live births when you include obstetric complications within the first year.” The citation is not a bit current, it’s a 1987 CDC [Center for Disease Control] survey, itself flawed.
CDC is supposed to collect the number of abortions done nationwide, but there are a number of states that don’t comply, including the huge state of California. A state that doesn’t even report abortions, certainly is not going to be reporting any sort of statistically relevant information about complications. So a high percentage of abortion complications are never reported.
‘Maternal mortality’ reported in the U.S. does not merely count deaths during or immediately following childbirth, it includes deaths from
- induced abortion (!);
- tubal and molar pregnancies;
- heart disease and high blood pressure, which may only be peripherally related to delivery;
- injuries and trauma UP TO ONE YEAR AFTER DELIVERY–including death from car accidents and murder!
Another factor is that the very few studies done about surgical death rates from induced abortion come from university medical centers. These hospitals have skillful surgeons, top notch surgical procedures and follow-up and accurate reporting. These accurately reflect the maternal mortality rate from abortions done in university medical centers which is only about 5% of all abortions.
90% of abortion centers regularly lack professional supervision, state inspection, and emergency resuscitation equipment. They have inadequate ambulance facilities, often have no RNs on duty and, most importantly, no qualified surgeon to do the work. [note, the recent Philadelphia Gosnell clinic scandal.]
The only requirement to do abortions in almost every state is an MD or a DO degree. [Kansas only requires physicians for post-22 week abortions!] Nearly anyone can open an abortion facility–a dermatologist, or–as Aid for Women clinic used– a failed lung doctor.
Wilke says, “You can be a hack, denied surgical or even admitting privileges in any hospital, and still do abortions. In fact, many abortionists are these kinds of incompetent doctors. The point to be made here is that the standard of care in the typical freestanding abortion facility doesn’t remotely compare to the standard of care at a university hospital.
The other factor, that is totally obvious, is these freestanding facilities don’t report any complications. There are no accurate scientific studies of the safety of abortions in these abortion mills.
When there is a complication, e.g., severe bleeding, the woman is rushed to the local legitimate hospital where she is taken care of by legitimate physicians. Commonly, her discharge diagnosis often doesn’t even mention abortion as the cause for her hemorrhage. One reason for this is that she commonly denies she had the abortion and if the attending physician is not absolutely sure, he may hesitate to mark down abortion as a cause of the problem.”
More on abortion complications in future posts.