March 18th 2006

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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY: AUSTRALIAN EXPORTS: Why we need a single desk for wheat

EDITORIAL: Net foreign debt soars towards $500 billion!

CANBERRA OBSERVED: Talentless, faction-torn Labor on the skids

TAXATION REFORM: Governments not facing the important issues

NATIONAL AFFAIRS: Australian Democrats, Greens move to restrict religion

SCHOOLS: Science teaching turned upside-down

STRAWS IN THE WIND: The future-eaters / Still more Turkish delight / Paul the train-wrecker is back

POLITICAL IDEAS: The new dark ages that are already upon us

CULTURE AND CIVILISATION: Perils of banishing religion from society

CULTURE: Hollywood, religion and C.S. Lewis

RUSSIA: Russia's population implosion

OPINION: AMA and RANZCOG taken to task over RU-486

Attorney-General's 'grave concerns' over national security breach (letter)

Labor's Kevin Rudd on abortion drug (letter)

Anti-life politicians 'a useless commodity' (letter)

Capitalism raises living standards (letter)

BOOKS: SOCIAL IMPACT ASSESSMENT: An Introduction, by C.J. Barrow

BOOKS: Eleventh Month, Eleventh Day, Eleventh Hour: Armistice Day 1918, by Joseph E. Persico

Books promotion page

AMA and RANZCOG taken to task over RU-486

by Babette Francis

News Weekly, March 18, 2006
Two prominent medical organisations surprised many of their rank-and-file by not consulting them before giving blanket support for the handing over of control of the abortion drug RU-486 to the Therapeutic Goods Administration, writes Babette Francis, B.Sc (Hons).

Now that control of the abortion drug RU-486 has been handed to the Therapeutic Goods Administration, any of half-a-dozen senior medical officers could approve registration of the controversial drug in Australia.

This is a worry because the Australian Medical Association and the Royal Australia New Zealand College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists, in the RU-486 debate, gave blanket support to the TGA Amendment Bill, without consulting their rank-and-file membership.

Dr Elvis Seman, consultant gynaecologist and senior lecturer at Flinders University, South Australia, during part of his testimony to the Senate inquiry on the Bill, said: "My concern is that because these organisations [the AMA and RANZCOG] have such a strong pro-choice influence, they in turn would influence the TGA and, therefore, something that is potentially dangerous would be passed...".

Health failure

Although the medical profession has done valuable work, aided by scientific advances, in improving health and life expectancy of Australians, the one area in which the AMA/RANZCOG has failed is in reproductive health.

Here are some of the contra-indications for abortion which the medicos have ignored.

Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show that 24 per cent of Australian women will be childless - a few by choice; but many will grieve for children they could have had, but whom they aborted for lack of adequate counselling.

Others childless mothers are left with blocked fallopian tubes caused by sexually-transmitted diseases. IVF treatment is not always successful. The AMA/RANZCOG do not disapprove of permissive lifestyles and prescribe the pill to adolescents.

Abortion for "mental health" reasons can no longer be justified in view of the New Zealand Fergusson study showing that abortion causes mental distress and severe depression. Yet abortion providers have criticised the study, saying it should be treated with caution. Caution towards whom? The mother? The hapless foetus?

Even more serious, a 1997 study of maternal deaths in Finland revealed that, in the first year following an abortion, aborting women were 252 per cent more likely to die compared to women who delivered and 76 per cent more likely to die compared to women who had not been pregnant. Many of the extra deaths were due to suicide.

On 29 July 2005 the World Health Organization, declared the combined oestrogen-progestogen oral contraceptive is carcinogenic. This is the most recent low-dose contraceptive currently available which the manufacturers trumpeted as being "safe" for women.

WHO placed the contraceptives into its Group 1 classification, the highest classification of carcinogenicity, used only "when there is sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity in humans" (such as similarly-classified tobacco and asbestos).

The ANZ/RANZCOG have not publicised the WHO classification. Instead, they have suggested that women should not panic, i.e. not panic about the daily ingestion of a carcinogen!

The incidence of breast cancer rose 40 per cent during the decade 1987-1997 - approximately 28 years after the de facto legalisation of abortion in Australia - and continues to rise inexorably, with the medical profession offering neither explanation nor prevention.

While the AMA/RANZCOG continue to deny the link between induced abortion and breast cancer, they cannot deny that the younger a woman is when she has a baby the less her risk of breast cancer. Yet they fail to advise teenagers that their unplanned pregnancy is not a biological disaster but does provide protection against a major cause of death and/or disease in pre-menopausal women.

RU-486 is a synthetic anabolic sex steroid like those that athletes sometimes use to build more muscle and thus enhance performance. Since taking those steroids seems so inherently wrong and dangerous that taking them is unlawful, why is the AMA/RANZCOG promoting RU-486?

Searle, manufacturer of misoprostol, the second drug in the RU-486 abortion regimen, has warned that it should not be used for abortion, yet the AMA/RANCOG endorses this off-label use of the drug.

The AMA/RANZCOG are derelict in their duty to post-abortion women, refusing to acknowledge post-abortion syndrome. It is left to pregnancy support volunteers to counsel and help these women.

The AMA/RANZCOG have ignored the link between abortion and prematurity in subsequent births, a major cause of cerebral palsy.

Kristy Bruce, confined to a wheelchair and unable to speak, sued her mother's obstetrician; but the NSW judge (2004) found that her mother's uterus had ruptured due to a previous abortion, depriving Kristy of oxygen. Taxpayers and patients pay the increasing costs of medical insurance for obstetricians.

By endorsing abortion, not only have the AMA/RANZCOG ignored their second patient, the unborn child; they have also overlooked the best interests of their first patient, the mother.

  • Babette Francis, B.Sc (Hons), is co-ordinator of Endeavour Forum Inc.

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