Update |

Board of Directors Urges Congress to Help All Communities

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20510

May 17, 2020

Dear Speaker Pelosi,

We, the Board of Physicians for Reproductive Health, want to express the urgency for Congress to provide help to all communities and oppose attempts to roll back access to reproductive health care during this moment of national crisis. Physicians for Reproductive Health (Physicians) is a doctor-led national advocacy organization that uses evidence-based medicine to promote sound reproductive health policies. Physicians unites the medical community and concerned supporters.

As physicians, many of whom are working on the frontlines of the pandemic, we are deeply alarmed by the decisions coming from the Trump Administration, anti-abortion federal legislators, and anti-abortion state politicians who have used the COVID-19 pandemic to restrict comprehensive reproductive health care. We are thankful for the work of the House of Representatives to craft relief bills to keep people safe and healthy. We urge Congress to continue working towards passage of bills free from political restrictions, centering women, families, and those working at the frontlines across all industries.

As physicians, we saw the harm of anti-abortion legislation on the lives of our patients prior to the pandemic and continue to see the harm nationwide as the pandemic makes travel for care more difficult. While many states are lifting their stay at home orders, we fear that outbreaks could again rise, triggering the same sorts of anti-abortion bans we saw in April in several states. What is clear to us as physicians is that the legal right to abortion, an essential and time-sensitive procedure, remains dependent on a patient’s zip code. And the pending decision in June Medical Services v. Russo may exacerbate that inequality further.

Moreover, we know that these restrictions disproportionately impact people with low incomes, Black, Latinx, Asian American and Pacific Islander, and Native individuals, LGBTQ+ individuals, immigrants, youth, individuals with disabilities, and those living at the intersections of those identities. The pandemic caused unemployment to rise placing tremendous financial burdens on families. This crisis shows us the urgent need to pass legislation expanding access to and coverage for abortion care and prevent restrictions from being placed in new bills.

As physicians, we will continue doing our part to support all communities seeking essential time sensitive services during these difficult and chaotic times. We thank you for your work this spring and we support you as you work to advance bills to benefit the health of our families and communities that include protection for abortion care and reproductive health care.


Sarp Aksel, MD
New York, NY

Nancy J. Auer, MD
Mercer Island, WA

Carol Ball, MD
St. Paul, MN

Margaret Boozer, MD, MPH
Birmingham, AL

Kristyn Brandi, MD, MPH
Newark, NJ

Kohar Der Simonian, MD
Falmouth, ME

Duane L. Dowell, MD, FAAP
Chicago, IL

Caitlin Fiss, MD
New York, NY

Bhavik Kumar, MD, MPH
Houston, TX

Amber Lau, MPH, OMSII
Sacramento, CA

Katherine McHugh, MD
Indianapolis, IN

Ghazaleh Moayedi, DO, MPH
Dallas, TX

Jason Rafferty, MD, MPH, EdM
Providence, RI

Yashica Robinson, MD
Huntsville, AL 

Brandi Shah, MD, MPH
Birmingham, AL

David Turok, MD, MPH
Salt Lake City, UT

Tracey Wilkinson, MD, MPH
Indianapolis, IN

Valerie Williams, MD
New Orleans, LA

Jodi Magee
Physicians for Reproductive Health