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The University of Minnesota's cowardly approach to abortion training

Though abortions are more common than gall bladder removals, the university let religion dictate how it trains doctors.

Though abortions are more common than gall bladder removals, the university let religion dictate how it trains doctors. Susan Du

Reader Steve Miles responds to University of Minnesota caves to pressure on abortion rights fellowship:

The dean of the University Medical School has withdrawn the from Reproductive Rights Advocacy Fellowship, which would have allowed the U to hire and train a teaching doctor to show medical and nursing students how to perform IUD insertions, first trimester sonographies, endometrial biopsies, and abortions.

The dean explained this decision, "We will examine the value of this training in the context of our mission along with the values of the community."

The cowardly Medical School's decision harms women and children in Minnesota. The people of Minnesota depend on the U medical school to educate health professionals for the entire state. (Surprise! Many doctors from other states do not want to move to our smaller cities or non-metro areas.)

Last year there were more abortions done in the United States than removals of gall bladders. The university would not consider training medical professionals who could not remove a gall bladder.

IUDs (which are contraception, not abortion) are especially needed as the government tries to cut payments for contraception. Access to contraception is the best means of decreasing abortion. Contraception, every child a wanted child, is best for children, far better than foster homes or erratic child protection care plans.

The university defended its stem cell research program and vaccinations against culturally potent and scientifically counterproductive views of anti-vaxers. Why does the university allow religion to adversely affect medical training?

Abortion and contraception are legal, widely used aspects of reproductive health care. We must keep them safe and available.

Steven Miles, MD Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota.