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 Health and Reproductive Rights. Medical Institutions  Provide service based on insurance coverage and ability to pay  Historically women have paid.

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Presentation on theme: " Health and Reproductive Rights. Medical Institutions  Provide service based on insurance coverage and ability to pay  Historically women have paid."— Presentation transcript:

1  Health and Reproductive Rights

2 Medical Institutions  Provide service based on insurance coverage and ability to pay  Historically women have paid up to 48% more than men for health premiums  The high cost of health care means we often go without medical services

3 2010 US Health Insurance Reform  Public or private entities that receive federal funds cannot deny health coverage (there are a few exceptions to this)  Insurers have to provide maternity coverage  Young adults can stay on parents’ insurance until age 26  Preexisting conditions and lifetime caps are eliminated

4 Environmental Justice  Addresses inequities due to race, class, sex, etc. that result when individuals must live in conditions that are hazardous to their health (poor quality water, exposure to toxic chemicals and hazardous waste)  People of color are disproportionately exposed to environmental toxins

5 Examples of toxic exposure  Gulf Coast: After being ravaged by the hurricanes Katrina and Rita, residents were further assaulted by cancer-causing formaldehyde inside the trailer homes that were provided by the Federal Emergency Management Authority (FEMA).  New Bedford, MA and other urban centers: One of the most common chemicals found in toxic waste sites that are located in urban residential neighborhoods is trichloroethylene (TCE), which is likely to cause cancer, liver and kidney disease as well as autoimmune diseases. TCE can be inhaled after vaporizing on playgrounds or leaching into people’s basements and drinking water.

6 Corporate Responsibility  When profits come first, safety concerns are often ignored  Toxic exposure  Food additives  Genetically modified food  Use of pesticides  Use of growth hormones in beef and dairy products

7 Androcentrism  Historically, women and children have not been included in medical research and clinical trials, even though procedures and medications can affect them much differently than they affect men  More money has been spent on diseases that are more likely to afflict men  Medicalization: normal bodily functions come to be seen as indicative of disease (problem that needs to be fixed)  Stereotyping (emotional factors considered more often when diagnosing women)

8 Reproductive Choice  Access to safe and affordable birthing, parenting, and birth control options  Freedom from forced sterilization  Availability of abortion  Eugenics: certain groups have more right to reproduce than others

9 Comstock Act  1873: made it illegal to send any obscene, lewd, and/or lascivious materials through the mail (including contraceptive devices or information regarding contraception)  Overturned by the Supreme Court in 1936  1966: birth control became legal for married couples (singles: 1972, minors:1977)

10 Abortion  In the US, abortion was not limited by law or opposed by the church until the 19 th century  Between over 40 laws were enacted to restrict abortion  1973 Supreme Court Decision: Constitution protects a woman’s decision to terminate her pregnancy - first trimester abortions legalized  States can only control abortions after a fetus is viable  Abortions necessary to preserve the life or health of the mother must be allowed

11 Global Gag Rule  Nongovernmental organizations receiving U.S. assistance cannot use separately obtained non-U.S. funds to inform the public or educate their government on the need to make safe abortion available, provide legal abortion services, or provide advice on where to get an abortion.  The policy restricts a basic right to speech and the right to make informed health decisions, as well as harms the health and lives of poor women by making it more difficult to access family planning services. It has also been found that the policy does not reduce abortion. (Center for Health and Gender Equity)  Enacted in 1985; repealed by President Obama in 2009

12 Limiting Abortion  Since Roe v. Wade, laws have been enacted that place numerous limitations on abortion  Hyde Amendment (can’t use Medicaid funds)  Congress can forbid states to use federal funds (Planned Parenthood)  States can forbid use of public facilities or public employees  Parental notification, mandatory counseling, waiting periods, refusal clauses  Federal Abortion Ban (bans late term abortions)

13 Limiting Abortion  Oklahoma: pregnant women offered opportunity to view ultrasound; physician can choose not to tell a woman that her fetus has a birth defect  Nebraska: abortions illegal after 20 weeks (requirement that women receive mental health screening was blocked)  Due to violence against providers, almost 90% of counties in the US have no abortion provider and only 12% of ob-gyn medical residency programs offer routine training in abortion procedures  Increase in Crisis Pregnancy Centers (pro-life)

14 Personal v. Political  Many of those attempting to deny women safe and legal abortions are the same ones calling for reductions in social, medical, educational, and economic support of poor children  Pro-life does not always include being for-life once these children are born  What is the likely outcome if you force women to become mothers?


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