Nurse Pulls IUD Out of Patient; Says IUD Are a Type of Abortion: Trying to understand the logic of why someone against abortion would remove a contraceptive device will hurt your head — trust me. But do read the court story nicely summarized by Tracy Clark-Flory. Understandably, the patient is suing nurse practitioner Sylvia Olona and Presbyterian Medical Services Rio Rancho Family Health Center (Albuquerque, N.M.).
Heroes of the Week: Writing at Women’s eNews, Kristin Bender reports on Teens for Safe Cosmetics, which last year endorsed a small body care product line that promises to keep suspicious chemicals off adolescents’ skin. Sales figures through the end of December totaled $150,000, and the group, which has active chapters in the San Francisco Bay area and New York, plans to add more products this year.
The New, Improved Whitehouse.gov: The new White House website is worth a visit. In addition to the information you’d expect to find on President Obama’s cabinet and White House history, this is the first administration to feature a blog. And the agenda includes a women’s section that addresses healthcare, economic security and gender equity.
Medical Debt a Growing Worry: The problem of medical debt is “climbing the income scale, affecting not just the poor or the uninsured,” writes Sandra G. Boodman of Kaiser Health News. These are the latest numbers:
Experts define the underinsured as those forced to spend at least 10 percent of their income on health care, excluding premiums. But the nonprofit Center for Studying Health System Change found recently that financial pressures on families increase sharply when out-of-pocket spending on medical bills exceeds 2.5 percent of family income. New York’s Commonwealth Fund has reported that 72 million adults under age 65 had problems paying medical bills or were paying off medical debt in 2007, up from 58 million in 2005. Many had insurance, and 39 percent said they had exhausted their savings paying for health care.
Plus: The New York Times reports that Medicaid roles are surging due to the recession and employees losing their health coverage along with their jobs. For many states it’s become an unmanageable burden.
Senate Passes Wage Discrimination Bill: The Senate passed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act this week by a vote of 61-36 (here’s the vote breakdown). When the Senate voted on similar legislation in April, it failed by two votes.
“We’ve had an enormous victory,” said Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.), a main sponsor. All 16 female senators voted in favor. The legislation now goes back to the House for reconciliation before being sent to President Obama, who is expected to sign the bill.
Biblical Battered Wife Syndrome: “In the face of prominent leaders who claim helplessness in the face of biblical tradition, [Christian domestic violence survivor and advocate Jocelyn] Andersen and a small but growing cadre of like-minded abuse survivors are fighting this established conservative wisdom on domestic violence not with secular or feminist domestic violence tactics, but with new theological arguments arguing for abused wives’ rights within a biblically literalist, and in some cases even complementarian, framework,” writes Kathryn Joyce in this piece at Religion Dispatches.
Joyce has a book coming out next month titled “Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement.”
What Do Women Want?: The New York Times Sunday Magazine tackles the question via this cover story, summed up as: “A new generation of postfeminist sexologists is trying to discover what ignites female desire.” I haven’t read the piece yet, but I skimmed the comments.