A letter to the editor in today’s Columbus Dispatch on the HHS mandated coverage for contraception, for which I can only say, “You can’t encourage government intervention in health care without realizing that what the government pays for, the government controls.” Were they just naive or amazingly terminally blind? I honestly don’t know, but I know they were wrong.
From Sr. Judith Ann Karam, president and CEO of the Sisters of Charity Health System in Cleveland:
I thank Vice President Joe Biden for visiting Ohio today.
The Sisters of Charity Health System is a Cleveland-based Catholic health-care organization which, in collaboration with other Catholic health ministries, actively promoted the passage of the Affordable Care Act. We are dedicated to increased health-care coverage and access and are supportive of the law’s efforts to improve quality of care and patient outcomes.
Maybe, sister, you should have fully understood the entire legislation before you encouraged your elected officials to vote for it.
I ask the vice president to help Catholic and other faith-based employers with a recent federal action. We are very disappointed with the Health and Human Services rule on women’s preventive services that requires the inclusion of contraceptive coverage and sterilization in employer-based employee-benefits plans. The regulation denies adequate conscience protections for religious employers like us.
Weak, weak, weak: “We are very disappointed.” Disappointed gets you nowhere. And the regulation also “denies adequate protections” for any employers who feels these requirements are morally evil, but as long as the church institutions get their exemption, they seem to be fine with others having to violate either their consciences or the law.
Our faith motivates us; we carry out the healing mission because of God’s call. And we are blessed to be joined in our ministry by a diverse and inclusive work force.
That’s why we supported legislation we didn’t understand that promoted government control. [/sarc]
We urge President Barack Obama to be consistent with existing provider conscience-protection laws and allow us to exercise our First Amendment rights to conscience protection as faith-based employers. Please fix this discriminatory rule.