Over 300 South Carolina health care professionals recently signed an open letter to Governor Henry McMaster and state legislators in opposition to S.1, the proposed abortion ban (also known as the Heartbeat Bill). The providers cite an inappropriate politicization of women’s healthcare and existing health disparities in South Carolina.
The signers include health care professionals from across the state, some of whom are members of the South Carolina Section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). This professional organization has expressed support for access to abortion in all 50 states.
Opposition to the abortion ban is based in science and Dr. Dawn Bingham, Legislative Chair for the South Carolina section of ACOG emphasizes the safety of the procedure.
"My physician colleagues and I have pointed out the science,” Dr. Dawn Bingham said. “These regulations are medically unjustified, as abortion is one of the safest medical services, and in the United States, 25% of women will obtain an abortion by age 45. Health care professionals know that abortion restrictions are harmful to our patients and do nothing to address the urgent needs of South Carolinians, and that is why so many are coming together to urge state lawmakers to oppose legislation such as SB 1, South Carolina’s obstetrician-gynecologists are grateful that our clinician colleagues from across the spectrum of patient care are speaking out to defend the ability of our patients to make the health care decisions that are right for them and for their families.”
Across the state, advocates and health care providers believe the decision to have an abortion should remain between a pregnant person and their health care provider.
“Shared decision making between patients and their health care providers must continue to rely on science, best practices, and individual needs,” the letter states. “We respectfully urge you to oppose legislation that restricts access to reproductive health care and seeks to punish clinicians providing compassionate, evidence-based care."