.- The Bishops’ Conference of Peru has issued a statement demanding the country’s Ministry of Health make public the international scientific information that has not discounted the potential abortifacient nature of the morning-after pill. Likewise the bishops denounced an effort to keep Catholics from participating in public debate on the issue. Released by the Conference’s executive committee, the statement warned that health authorities are being deceptive by claiming that the scientific debate has been settled when the international scientific community has not disproved the pill’s anti-implantation mechanism, which would make it abortifacient.
A review of current scientific studies shows that the pill’s anti-implantation effect has not been disproved; rather, it is a part of the effectiveness of the misnamed “emergency oral contraception.”
The bishops questioned the publication by the Health Ministry of only seven scientific studies to justify the distribution and sale of the drug in a country where abortion is illegal, and they said the information lacks transparency and objectivity.
“We are witnesses that crucial scientific information is being repeatedly and systematically concealed, with serious studies that demonstrate the third, anti-implantation effect of Levonorgestrel, the main ingredient of the pill, being ignored,” the bishops stated.
They noted that the Committee on Bioethics of the Bishops’ Conference sent a report to the Health Ministry that analyzed the seven studies cited by officials as well as sixteen other more rigorous studies that officials ignored.
“We reject as discriminatory the statements that characterize people who profess religious beliefs as opposed to science. In the case of the morning-after pill, those who defend it are the ones who are opposed to considering all of the data that scientific research currently offers,” the bishops said.
Officials, called to serve those who elected them, must not give in to special-interest groups “pressuring them not to provide all of the information that citizens have a right to know,” they concluded.