Dear Governor Sununu,
We, as medical professionals in the state of New Hampshire, strongly oppose the medically unjustified regulation of health care as proposed in the current state budget (HB 2 Sections 37-40). Decisions about a patient’s medical care and management are always best made between the patient and their clinician.
This arbitrary ban on abortion later in pregnancy, which has limited maternal health exceptions, and none for fatal fetal health, rape, or incest, interferes with the patient-provider relationship in complex circumstances. Abortion later in pregnancy often results from a patient’s health or life being at risk, or because of serious complications with a pregnancy. Achieving the best possible outcomes in extremely complex pregnancies depends on the outstanding efforts of highly trained physicians, physician assistants, nurses, and nurse practitioners.
We are especially alarmed that this ban criminalizes clinicians with up to 7 years in prison. New Hampshire already struggles to retain medical professionals, and we are deeply concerned that these criminal penalties will undermine our state's efforts to recruit and retain clinicians. Furthermore, these criminal penalties will erode trust between medical experts and the public. Patients, in consultation with clinicians, must have the ability to make these personal medical decisions without government interference. Replacing clinical judgement with government mandates irreparably compromises patient autonomy and consent.
This language has no health or safety benefit to patients. It overrides a clinician’s judgment with a government mandate, compromises evidence-based, patient-centered care, and represents ill-advised interference in the practice of medicine. We urge Governor Sununu to trust New Hampshire’s medical experts by vetoing the state budget.
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