HB 2598, the Pro-Life Protections Act, contains several provisions reflecting the state’s right not to prop up abortion businesses with income tax advantages, and not to require abortion training for students at state-funded universities.
While the bill awaits a vote from the House Federal-State Affairs committee, a lobbyist for the University of Kansas (KU) has alerted state representatives that KU needs a specific exemption from HB 2598 to continue abortion training for their ob/gyn physician residents. The lobbyist writes that, without the exemption, national accreditation from ACGME (the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education) will be pulled — but no clear evidence of this has been produced.
KU did not testify at the bill hearing; neither is there evidence that KU contacted ACGME about the situation in light of the fact that Arizona last year passed a clear ban (see section c here) on using public monies for abortion training — without loss of accreditation for their state post-graduate ob/gyn program. (check http://www.acgme.org/adspublic/, choose “accredited programs,” choose specialty (obgyn) and choose state to see accredited programs).
Furthermore, the legislative permission for establishing the KU Hospital Authority rested on ending abortions at KU– which KU resisted in 1997, and conceded in 1998. Now it appears they are not following lawmakers’ intent, and only moved the abortion training off of state property.
- Federal law protects funding for medical education that objects to abortion participation– regardless of ACGME accreditation.
- There is no professional reason that ob/gyn resident physicians have to learn how to destroy unborn children in order to achieve competency in pregnancy management, stillbirth evacuation or treating abortion complications.
ACGME already knows abortion training is not needed, because they “allow” individual graduate students to “opt out” of doing abortions and still attain a medical degree. Here’s the Constitutional and legal background:
- In 1989, the Supreme Court’s Webster ruling said states retain the right to promote child birth and that Roe v Wade did not compel states to be in the abortion business.
- In 1995, national abortion advocates complained about the decreasing number of abortionists and pressured the national graduate medical educational accreditation agency, ACGME, to add abortion training as part of required rotations for residents in ObGyn programs.
- In 1996, as a response to the ACGME policy change, federal law (the Coats amendment) was enacted to protect educational programs– as well as individuals– from forced abortion participation.
- In 1998, Kansas enacted the KU Hospital Authority, including a provision (KSA 76-3308 (i)) to stop abortions from being performed at KU.
HB 2598 does not prevent any needed student instruction, it only refuses to help recruit students to become abortionists by extending the state’s ‘blessing’ on killing unborn children.