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The RH Bill’s Impact on Your Rights and Freedom

October 24, 2010

NOTE: The following is a response I made to a Facebook commenter who asked whether the bill I posted on my blog (Reproductive Health and Population Development Act of 2008 authored by Rep. Edcel Lagman) contains the exact RH proposal.


Be very careful what you wish for, folks...

Here’s my answer:

Yes, my post contains the exact 2008 RH proposal of Rep. Lagman. However, there are other versions of the RH bill in Congress (both lower and upper houses). If I’m not mistaken, Lagman filed another version of his original bill. But here’s the thing: the whole Congress are going to debate on the issues concerning the bill, and some of these issues include reproductive health,  population, the use of contraception, family planning, regulation of businesses and the medical profession, among others, and they would certainly make a compromise, as they always did whenever they tackled pieces of legislation in the past.

But here are the FACTORS that our lawmakers should consider:

  • The current condition of the country’s economy. Can the government provide all the RH services mentioned in the bill WITHOUT TAXING the people?
  • The bill’s penal and punitive provisions.
  • Are they going to shift the burden to employers, health care providers and others?
  • The country’s budget deficit, tax revenue, or the financial capacity of the government to pursue the intents of the bill.

Whatever that result of that compromise would be, here are the very POSSIBLE effects/impacts of the bill on your rights and freedom:

  • Big government, which means the government will have to assume a bigger role to rule our lives.
  • More government regulations of the business community, the medical profession, and the education sector.
  • There would be higher prices of commodities and services, including medical services. Why is this the case? It’s because employers and even hospitals would be compelled to raise their prices in order to offset the RH expenses they pay for their workers. If they don’t do this, they’d go BROKE!
  • There would be more regulations and controls to come. The government could even issue PRICE CONTROLS in order to legally prevent companies from raising their prices.
  • The system would corrupt the entire medical profession. Since RH services would be partly or even fully subsidized by the government and/or paid for by employers, hospitals might look at opportunities to get more patients or RH beneficiaries rather than focusing on quality health care. How much should a hospital charge for every RH care visit to be covered by Philhealth or a private company? How would the government or state regulators know whether a particular clinic or hospital mis-declare the number of its patients, its price, etc?
  • Private companies and firms would be compelled to lay off workers or not to hire women or new workers in order to avoid more RH care expenses. This is very much possible since the bill includes punitive or penal provisions against employers who refuse or fail to comply with their “responsibilities.”
  • There would be less innovation in the medical industry since one of the effects of the bill is that it justifies state or government’s fixing of the prices of medical services. If the government through PhilHealth pays for the RH case expenses of poor people and if employers pay for the expenses of their workers, then that gives the government the “right” to regulate or control the prices of RH services.
  • The government would be compelled to levy additional tax rates or new taxes or borrow money from foreign sources in order to fully deliver the promises of the bill.
  • The bill, if ever enacted, would have a negative impact on our individual rights and freedom, as it allows the government to have more power to heavily regulate the business sector, the medical profession, the education sector, and to rule our lives.
18 Comments leave one →
  1. October 24, 2010 3:38

    Great post. You raise point per point the many hazards of the RH Bill.

  2. October 25, 2010 3:38

    “The system would corrupt the entire medical profession. Since RH services would be partly or even fully subsidized by the government and/or paid for by employers, hospitals might look at opportunities to get more patients or RH beneficiaries rather than focusing on quality health care. How much should a hospital charge for every RH care visit to be covered by Philhealth or a private company? How would the government or state regulators know whether a particular clinic or hospital mis-declare the number of its patients, its price, etc?”
    We don’t need an RH bill.
    While I was a medical student, I rotated at the local regional government hospital for a total of 15 days. Though I was there for only a short period of time, I came to the conclusion that there is no need for any further legislation (i.e. the Reproductive Health Bill) regarding the use of contraception or sterilization. The mechanism is already in place right at this level.
    As soon as an indigent patient is brought to the delivery room,and subsequently advised to undergo a second caesarian section (or succeeding thereof), one is immediately advised to have a bilateral tubal ligation as well and then wife and husband are asked to sign a consent form. I observed this to be the standard operating procedure. No further explanations are made to help the patient in labor pains to come to an informed decision. I guess the few staff around were too busy attending to more patients coming in that giving said patient all the information she needs such as explanations of what to expect, pros and cons, including possible side effects (i.e. ectopic pregnancies in the blocked fallopian tube) would take too much of their time.
    I was completely appalled when one mother about to have a third caesarian section was berated and bad-mouthed by resident physicians, nurses and midwives for deciding not to have a bilateral tubal ligation at the same time, what is known as C/S + BTL in medical parlance. The said patient was already crying (from the emotional barrage and the pains of labor) but firmly stuck to her decision. The husband was also unwilling to sign the consent. I decided to whisper to her to be strong and stick to her choice. The residents gave as reason that there are usually a lot of adhesions (Aren’t there surgical SOP’s done to prevent this from happening?) and when the the next caesarian section is done, the procedure becomes technically difficult. A good enough argument, yet are not doctors supposed to honor the patient’s decision (without coercing her to change it by emotional abuse) and render their expertise with competence? If the uterus thus becomes so scarred after having been cut open several times as to render it diseased, hysterectomy thus may be performed without violating the bioethical principle of bodily integrity. I know of several persons who have had multiple caesarian sections (one had at least 7) and may have had difficult deliveries but mother and children come out fine, thanks to medical advances and the proficiency of attending OB-GYNE’s.
    My personal experience with conscientious objection to assisting the OB-GYNE resident in performing a bilateral tubal ligation after doing a caesarian section was met with rolling of eyeballs and snide remarks in the operating room. In other circumstances, it might also mean a few more days rotation within that department (serving an extension, as we call it) or other such sanctions. With the passage of this bill, I pity the young aspiring doctors who want to be consistent with their faith and ethics who would now be faced with large fines and/or imprisonment for such actions.
    At the out-patient services department, mothers who have at least two children are at once instructed on the different methods they can avail of during their first post-natal check-up. There is bias for artificial contraceptives, of course as all manufactured products have shelf lives and need to be disposed of as soon as possible (not a few of these contraceptive devices are surpluses from elsewhere). Anyway, in medical school there is little mention of natural family planning (NFP) which is always mentioned while dismissing it as “highly unreliable”. I wish they also gave us time to learn how to teach these methods to couples as part of our medical curriculum, in the same manner that they teach us to write prescriptions for artificial chemical contraceptives or show us how to insert IUD’s in medical school. In that way, there would be absolutely no bias for those wanting to go in this specialized field of medicine to just write down a prescription rather than take time to explain a method.
    It also seems that government hospitals may also have a certain quota for sterilization procedures as one friend of mine noted that during an endorsement, the chairperson of the department of obstetrics and gynecology queried her residents regarding the fact that their census for said procedures had gone down for the month. They did not know that it was thanks to the way my friend tactfully and slowly explained to the mothers in the delivery room NFP and the value of openness to welcome another life even in the midst of poverty: Not another mouth to feed but two more hands to help.

    • October 26, 2010 3:38

      Thanks for sharing such an interesting story… Well, I think doctors should be at the forefront of this battle. It’s so sad that there are few doctors who support this bill.

  3. November 24, 2010 3:38

    This country is damn overpopulated already! And what makes this worse is that no one seems to consider this to be a serious problem. Overpopulation causes pollution, poverty, starvation, crimes, and what-have-you’s. Government has to conduct some program and tell the people the effects of overpopulation. Mother Nature does not need more babies so people should stop breeding!

    Why I support the RH Bill? The answer is very simple.

    TOO MANY BABIES ARE BORN TOO SOON in the Philippines. Ang dami nang tao? Hindi ba kayo nasisikipan sa paligid n’yo?

    • November 24, 2010 3:38

      That’s pure leftist hogwash and leftist stupidity… If you believe in the myth of overpopulation and if you want to control population, here’s what you, RH people, should do:

      1. Band together and form a pro-RH bill organization.

      2. Try your very best to recruit new members until you reach several hundreds of thousands or millions.

      3. And finally, conduct mass ligation (for women) and mass vasectomy operation (for men).

      Don’t worry, we’re going to finance your campaign and mass vasectomy and ligation operation.

      In regard to overpopulation and poverty, I’ve DEBUNKED that a long time ago! READ

    • Leo G permalink
      April 27, 2011 3:38

      Den, I think you need to read more about arguments for and against overpopulation. Sa mga rural areas na ang mga malalawak na lupain ay pag-aari ang mga landlords, walang masyadong tao roon maliban sa mga manggagawang kalimita’y kulang ang tinatanggap na sweldo upang buhayin nang maayos ang kanilang pamilya. Kaya, marami ang pumupunta rito sa Maynila at sa mga malalaking lungsod kung saan dito sila nakikipag-agawan sa mapapasukan. Bakit? Hindi masyadong binibigyang pansin ng pamahalaan ang maraming maralitang taga bukid. Karamihan, papogi points lang ang ginagawa ng mga binoto nating opisyales. Bad governance and corruption.

    March 6, 2011 3:38

    Greetings in the name of the God, Lord Almighty, Ruler of all Heaven and of Earth

    It saddens me to read such hatred. Even though I know deep in my heart that the Lord is using you as an instrument of his divine will. You may not not it or even admit it to yourself but the Lord works in mysterious ways and even in your lust for violence and horrid words, he still makes use of your efforts to undermine the evil that is the RH Bill.

    I only pray that in time, you will come to realize that we are only like ants beneath his omnipotent might and nothing we do can escape his notice. Pride comes before the fall. Remember that. I only pray that He, in his infinite goodness, will inspire you to see that everything we say or do only serves to glorify his almighty Name.

    Your sister in the Lord,

    • May 26, 2011 3:38

      Agreed, someone should tell this egoistic author that he is just being a big dushbag. Thinking that he is a prime human, saying to people that they are idiots. Who is he to say to other people that they are idiots?

      “True strength is in respect”

      I have read the pro RH Bill reply’s on your posts and NONE OF THEM EVER CALLED you an IDIOT. So WHY CALL THEM IDIOTS? Even though you think they are wrong.. Your being a jerk.

      Kala mo naman kasi kung sino ka, Pag ayaw mo sa comment nila sasabihan mo ng “IDIOT” sila. Respeto naman, kung ayaw mo sa comment nila reply ka ng maayos.

      Oh.. baka pati etong reply ko tirahin mo ng masasaman salita. Mag-ingat ka sa mga sinasabi mo baka mapahamak ka.

      Ako bata parin lang ako, pero ang tingin ko sayo is parang mas batang isip ka pa sa akin.

      Basta un na un, I said my part..

      Lalo na sa post mo na ito

      • May 26, 2011 3:38

        puro kabobohan…


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