Opinion on Women's Rights


By David Archer, MD

Virginia is one of the states that is actively protecting women's health rights. I am proud of that position but  nationally in several states and most importantly in the recent Supreme Court ruling rejecting Dobbs, women's rights are under attack. An individual either male or female has the right to make informed decisions regarding their medical care and personal life without interference by local, state, and federal government.  Individual medical decisions are being restricted by politicians and legislatures without taking into consideration the rights of the individual. Nowhere has this been more egregious than in the  recent Alabama Supreme court decision that embryos are people. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists rightfully indicate that before 24 weeks of pregnancy fetuses are previable.  Previable indicates that life outside the uterus is not sustainable. I am personally shocked and unhappy at the intrusion of legislators around the United States into the rights of an individual seeking medical assistance  to make an informed decision regarding family size whether it be for infertility or termination of an unwanted or unintended pregnancy. I have been a member of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) since 1964 and I have been involved directly with all of the major advances in reproduction for contraception and infertility services during my medical career. I have attached the recent ASRM position paper  submitted to Congress in the hopes that Senator DeSteph will concur with this position regarding embryos but most importantly with the overarching philosophy that all women and men have a right to make informed decisions regarding family size and health care without legislative intervention. I thank you for reviewing this document and appreciate Senator DeSteph's continued assurances of protection for individual medical decisions in Virginia.

American Society for Reproductive Medicine

Written Testimony for the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on

“The Continued Assault on Reproductive Freedoms in a Post-Dobbs America”

March 20, 2024


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The Roman Fasces was a symbol of strength and power occurring as a result of many binding together. It was made of multiple elm or birchwood rods about 5 feet long tied together and sometimes including an axe. It was carried by attendants to soldiers or powerful figures in ancient Rome. For us, it symbolizes that we are stronger and more powerful if we bind together in supporting our goals.

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