The recent ruling by the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade is a wakeup call for all of us who care about the rights of people being able to make decisions about their own healthcare. No matter your political perspective or leanings, any erosion of the rights for individuals and their loved ones to set the course for their own treatment in consultation with their medical professionals is of great concern.
ALS is a heterogenous disease, meaning that the disease presents itself differently in every person, and thus the right to make individual health care decisions with one’s doctor is critical. Overturning Roe v. Wade altered the landscape in a fundamental way. For example, new state laws banning abortion have affected some Americans’ abilities to access certain medications that are used to treat cancer and arthritis because those drugs could also be used in abortion procedures. We need to ensure people with any condition always have access to safe and effective treatments.
The ALS Association has a long history of advocating for the rights of Americans living with ALS in all 50 states and funding transformational research. We also have a long history of collaborating with nonprofit organizations across the spectrum and we join them in raising concerns about how political ideology is impacting healthcare.
We need to stand together as Americans, unified in our commitment to compassion, to inclusivity, and to science. People living with ALS, and all Americans, deserve political and judicial leaders who prioritize the rights of individuals to make their own healthcare decisions.