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Who’s Really Delaying the Millennium Development Goals? April 22, 2009

Posted by Maddog in HB 5043, Prolife Issues, Religion and Social Issues.
Tags: , , ,


Those know-it-alls at the UN are at it again.

I was quite dismayed to find how Minar Pimple, deputy director of the UN Millennium Campaign, thinks that ending the dispute on the RH bill — presumably meaning the end of opposition to it — would somehow allow us to reach the fifth U.N. Millennium Development Goal, which is improving maternal health. (“Dispute on reproductive health ‘delays pursuit of dev’t goals‘” — Sunstar, Monday, April 20, 2009)

Pimple seems to have forgotten that according to the World Health Organization the great majority of maternal deaths in the Philippines could be prevented by simply providing adequate basic and emergency obstetric health services along with trained midwives and health workers. Former senator Kit Tatad also points this out in his brilliant blog article, “Revised: THE TRUTH AND HALF-TRUTHS ABOUT REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH“:

The proponents claim that ten (10) poor women are dying everyday from complications during pregnancy or childbirth. This may or may not be correct. If correct, experience has shown (as in Gattaran, Cagayan and Sorsogon, Sorsogon) that the incidence of maternal death arising from such complications could be fully mitigated and brought down to zero simply by providing adequate basic and emergency obstetrics care and skilled medical personnel and services.

The RH bill, however, does nothing substantial to help in this area.

Instead, the bill’s authors seem intent on treating pregnancy as if it were a disease, and want to reduce maternal mortality by reducing childbirth. Instead of providing urgently needed health care, the RH Bill seeks to provide condoms and abortifacient contraceptives! The RH bill therefore ignores the real causes of maternal death while attacking a non-problem.

The Philippines has to deal with many other true killers such as heart and vascular diseases, pneumonia, tuberculosis, cancer, and diabetes. The government does not provide free medicines and medical treatment for these because it cannot afford to do so. Why then should it waste money on contraceptives which do not treat any real disease (pregnancy is not a disease)?

The RH Bill will not help reduce maternal deaths. It will only succeed in diverting scarce resources away from more urgent problems while encouraging even more promiscuity and — as the country experiences even more contraceptive failures — eventually greater demand for abortion.

It’s about time we junk this bill, along with Lagman and its other co-authors. And maybe we ought to tweak Pimple’s nose while we’re at it.