I preparing yesterday’s post on women in academia, I noticed an article on archdaily.com that suggested that architects are failing to speak up for women’s rights because they have allowed the Virginia Board of Health to institute new building codes requiring the upgrade of abortion clinics to meet the same specifications as newly constructed, full-service surgical hospitals.
Upon seeing this, I couldn’t help but laugh a little. I was thinking, “why would architects want to fight a government mandate on more work for themselves?” Now, of course, that is the cynical side of me. I know the issue is deeper than this, but after all, upgrading medical facilities to higher standards is not exactly a slight against women’s rights.
Regardless of your opinion on abortion, the pathetic attempt by the writers of the archdaily.com article think that asking abortion clinics to provide clean and surgical quality facilities in a procedure that is highly risky for women is forgetting the not so distant news of recent months about Dr. Kermit Gosnell. The facility he was running was deplorable, not to mention the atrocities he was committing against 9 month ready to be born babies or already born babies and their mothers. I can’t help thinking that maybe the Commonwealth of Virginia was responding to the horrifying conditions in Gosnell’s clinic and wanting to prevent the same sort of health nightmare in their state.
Let’s look at it from the stark and horrifying reality of what abortion is: it is a surgical procedure. To do it in a way that does not cause permanent and potentially life threatening damage to the mother, hospitals have it performed in their cleanest of rooms– the operating room. So, why, if hospitals deem it necessary to not do it in a simple exam room but in the sterile operating room, does archdaily.com think it necessary to continue to promote substandard facilities as a women’s rights issue?
I’m personally very disgusted by the practice of abortion. The idea of purposely killing an unborn child sickens me to the core. With that said, abortion is legal in this country. So if it is to be legal, then the facilities that provide that procedure should at least maintain the highest of medical standards.
As an architect who works on health care facilities, I take my responsibility very seriously. The quality of a building has very real implications to the health, safety, and welfare of the occupants, especially in medical facilities. Archdaily.com should be ashamed of themselves for suggesting that ensuring high quality facilities for a surgical facility is anti-women.