Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Play

Powerful testimony from Capitol Police officers at insurrection hearing; and CDC now says even vaccinated people should wear masks in some situations.

Play

CDC recommends vaccinated people mask up indoors; searing testimony in first hearing on Jan. 6 insurrection; man accused of killing 8, mostly women of Asian descent, in Atlanta area spa pleads guilty to 4 deaths; mental health takes center stage at Olympics with unexpected exit of superstar gymnast Biles. Note offensive but cogent language in first cut.

A Catholic Hospital in Iowa Offered Contraception for Decades. Then the Bishop Found Out.

Play

Wednesday, April 24, 2019   

WATERLOO, Iowa – A Catholic hospital in Iowa that offered contraception for decades has halted those services after Dubuque Archbishop Michael Jackels decided it was time to more strictly adhere to directives from the U.S. Conference on Catholic Bishops.

Since April 1, MercyOne Medical Center, formerly called Covenant, has prohibited contraceptive implants and severely limited other hormonal birth control, after already banning new tubal-ligation procedures.

Doula Ebonie Bailey of Waterloo said she is concerned for midwives such as those at Covenant who delivered her baby and provided post-delivery contraception.

"I think that they're in a really, really tough position," she said, "where I feel like potentially they have to choose between what they feel like is morally correct and their job. Their job is what pays their bills."

Iowa ranks second in the nation for the number of acute-care beds operating under Catholic health restrictions, according to MergerWatch. Nationally, the nonprofit reported, the number of acute-care Catholic hospitals grew by 22% between 2001 and 2016, while hospital numbers overall dropped by 6%, reducing women's choices for reproductive-health care.

Karla Solheim is one of several doctors who say they are worried that interventions such as the one in Waterloo could become more common, threatening reproductive-health care access for the one in six women nationwide who names a Catholic hospital as their go-to place for care. Solheim was chair of MercyOne Medical Center's OB-GYN department and performed tubal ligations when the sweeping crackdown on reproductive care began.

"In the field of OB-GYN, we consider contraception not only helping women plan their families, but we really consider it life saving," she said. "Pregnancy can be very dangerous, and in some women, it can be life-threatening."

As a doula, or birth companion whose focus is helping the birthing mother, Bailey attended many deliveries at Covenant but said she learned about the rule change through a social-media post.

"It feels as if I'm being told, 'If you do not agree with my religious preference, you can no longer be a patient here,' " she said, "which I feel like is completely wrong and immoral for someone to say, 'We either have to be on the same side or we can't even play on the same team.' "

The Catholic Church advocates natural family planning, which has a nearly 25% failure rate.


This story was written with original reporting by Amy Littlefield, an investigative reporter at Rewire.News. Follow Littlefield on Twitter at @amylittlefield. Her original story is online here.


get more stories like this via email

In a survey of young people who have experienced foster care, nearly 20% reported they ran out of food. (Maya Kruchancova/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Arkansans ages 16 to 26 who are or have been in the foster-care system now are eligible for one-time payments of at least $750…


Social Issues

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Jessica Molina of Perrysburg says she was inspired as a child by the spirit of activism, as she watched her parents participate in …

Environment

HARRISBURG, Pa. - U.S. Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., wants to bring back the Civilian Conservation Corps, a public-works program from the 1930s that created …


Nationwide, drug-overdose deaths increased by 30% between 2019 and 2020. (Andrey/Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

CHICAGO - Overdose deaths in Illinois rose by more than a quarter from 2019 to 2020, and medical experts are warning that pills not prescribed by a …

Health and Wellness

MINNEAPOLIS - As COVID cases trend upward again, public-health experts are setting the record straight on certain storylines about new infections…

A new report says the onset of the pandemic saw a drop of nearly 60% in children's visits to U.S. pediatricians. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

APPLETON, Wis. - The pandemic paused many facets of life, and a new report says wellness checkups for children were among them. With school resuming …

Environment

ALBANY, N.Y. - A ballot measure could give New York residents the constitutional right to a healthy environment, and on Tuesday a group of state …

Social Issues

SALEM, Ore. - Young people of color are locked up at disproportionately high rates compared with their white peers, despite recent signs the gap is …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021