Colorado Springs, Colo. - Focus on the Family set the record straight today on ultrasound statistics reported in the media and used by Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.
On Oct. 6, Congressman Bachman introduced a pro-life bill requiring abortion providers to make a preborn child’s heartbeat audible and visible to mothers considering abortion. Bachman mentioned a Focus “study” showing 78 percent of women who see and hear the fetal heartbeat choose life for their child among the reasons why she introduced the bill.
Unfortunately, that data — released by Focus on the Family in 2008 — isn’t completely accurate.
“We don’t have any ‘studies,’ and we don’t publish any percentages like that,” said Kelly Rosati, Focus on the Family’s vice president of community outreach. “We used to, but there were anomalies with the old data. We discovered them internally, corrected the problem and built a new system to prevent it from ever happening again.”
Under the new system, pregnancy medical clinics (PMCs) receiving grants from Focus’ Option Ultrasound Program voluntarily submit monthly data to the ministry. Since its inception, approximately 100,000 women who’ve seen their baby’s ultrasound have chosen life.
“It’s pretty rigorously screened, and from that we’re able to say the majority of women at risk for abortion, after counseling and ultrasound, choose life,” said Rosati. “We’ve had two years of clean data with the revised reporting system.
In the meantime, Rosati praised the congresswoman for taking a stand for life.
“It’s certainly true that ultrasound makes a difference,” she said. “That’s why we’ve been so committed to this program since 2004, and our constituents have been firmly committed to it, too.”
Option Ultrasound has thus far given away 528 grants for ultrasound machines or sonography training to PMCs in 49 states, and a foreign placement in Romania. PMCs are licensed to operate under the supervision of a physician, using only trained sonographers. Focus provides 80 percent of funding for machines and training.
Option Ultrasound is part of Focus’ work to speak for children who can’t speak for themselves. This includes, but is not limited to, orphan care through the Wait No More program, and human rights violations against children, such as trafficking and slavery.
To coordinate a media interview, contact Nina Coppola at 719-531-3386 or Nina.Coppola@fotf.org.