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Christian Medical & Dental Associations announces conscience victory in federal court

Bristol, Tenn.—August 24, 2022—The 13,000-member Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA), which is the nation’s largest faith-based professional healthcare association, today praised the preliminary injunction from a federal court in Texas that protects the religious beliefs of healthcare professionals from being forced to perform abortions.

In State of Texas v. Becerra, CMDA joined the American Association of Pro-life Obstetricians and Gynecologists (AAPLOG) to stop the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) from attempting to employ the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA) and force physicians capable of performing elective abortions to provide elective abortions in the emergency room. A federal district court issued an order Wednesday that blocks this attempt by HHS in Texas and for CMDA’s and AAPLOG’s members.

“This victory sends a strong message to the federal government that it cannot force healthcare professionals to violate their conscience and perform abortions against their strongly held religious beliefs,” said CMDA Senior Vice President of Bioethics and Public Policy Jeffrey Barrows, DO, MA (Ethics). “It clearly shows that this radical trampling of conscience is contrary to our most fundamental, constitutional freedoms of thought, speech and exercise of faith.”

This temporary injunction applies in the state of Texas and to the members of AAPLOG and CMDA located around the country, strengthening conscience rights of thousands of healthcare professionals.

“Abortion is not healthcare, and this move by the federal government was specifically designed to force doctors to perform abortions,” said CMDA CEO Mike Chupp, MD, FACS. “Healthcare professionals are focused on trying to save their patients—not on trying to end the lives of the unborn. This grievous attempt by HHS puts our patients at risk, and it violates the foundation of healthcare to ‘do no harm.”

CMDA is represented in this case by Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), the world’s largest legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, the sanctity of life, parental rights and God’s design for marriage and family.

“The Biden administration is needlessly, illegitimately and illegally working to turn emergency rooms into walk-in abortion facilities. Doctors get into their line of work to save lives and care for people—and that’s exactly what they are ethically, morally and legally required to do,” said ADF Senior Counsel Ryan Bangert, who argued before the court on behalf of CMDA and the other pro-life organizations named in the suit. “We’re pleased to see the court halt the administration’s attempt to flagrantly disregard the legislative and democratic process, and we’ll continue to defend those in the medical profession who wish to respect and save lives, not take them.”

CMDA has an ethics statement on abortion, which is available at www.cmda.org/ethics. This statement was developed by CMDA’s Ethics Committee and officially adopted by the organization. For more information about CMDA, visit www.cmda.org.

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