Going into a subsequent pregnancy after termination for fetal anomaly, I find I’m really concerned about the politics of my health care providers. How can I tell if an obstetrician (OB), maternal-fetal medicine (MFM) specialist or other health care provider is a “pro-life” anti-choice zealot who won’t support my decisions about my body, my baby and my family?
This is a great question and an important one. I actually had (unbeknownst to me at the time) a pro-life MFM. He deliberately delayed telling me my amnio results in an attempt to push me past my state’s abortion deadline. Fortunately, my regular (pro-choice) OB stepped in with the truth in time.
When I got pregnant again, I asked my OB to recommend an MFM who wasn’t an anti-choice zealot like the last one. I needed medical care providers who I could trust to respect my decisions. My OB recommended an honest and trustworthy MFM who didn’t have a political ax to grind and would not try to interfere with my decisions. Asking local health care providers who you already know and trust can be a good way to go.
It’s also fine to ask your doctor point blank where she or he stands on issues of choice.
Before even making an appointment, you can easily check the “pro-life” status of medical care providers in your area by doing a search at AAPLOG, the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Full disclosure: it’s a pro-life website so be careful about what information you put in their forms. But do take advantage of their handy search feature where you can search your geographic area for “pro-life” physicians who are registered members of AAPLOG (and by definition, dedicated to anti-choice and all that that implies).
I just tried it with my own location, and the anti-choice zealot MFM who lied to me came right up, along with several others. It also offers a way to search for “pro-life” medical care facilities and other kinds of professionals, providing you a heads up on what facilities and professionals to avoid if you value your right to make your own decisions about your health, pregnancy, and family.
Forewarned is forearmed.