Time For Change

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

This old idiom cannot be said of our current healthcare system. Everyone knows the current healthcare system is fragmented and dysfunctional. It is too expensive, too impersonal and too inconvenient. As bad as that is, it gets even worse for Christians. The healthcare system is being weaponized, increasingly undermining core biblical principles.

Here are just a few examples:

  • Pre-teen girls can now purchase abortifacient drugs at the local pharmacy without a prescription and without their parents’ knowledge or consent.
  • Abortion is deemed a “standard medical procedure” by the American Medical Association, the American Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and other medical associations.
  • A growing chorus of voices within the medical establishment call for an end to respecting the right of doctors and nurses to opt out of providing medications or performing procedures that violate their religious or moral conscience.
  • Through their insurance premiums, Christians are forced to pay for abortions and other medical procedures they find moral objectionable.
  • Christian surgeons are being pressured to perform gender reassignment surgeries and Christian pediatricians are pressured to provide hormone therapies for teens wanting to transition from male to female, or female to male.

These are all present practices, and there are more proposed. Yet, our legislators have shown their inability to fix the system. Insurance companies and hospital groups have no incentive to change. Doctors and patients find themselves stuck in a system that leaves both dissatisfied. What are we going to do about that?

Throughout history, the Church has been a catalyst for change when essential systems like healthcare lose their way. Since the days when Jesus walked on the earth, healing all manner of disease and disability, the Body of Christ has taught the world how to truly care for people. The history of modern medicine is filled with stories of Christians discovering new treatments, medications, therapies and interventions to address medical needs. That history also reveals how Christians have always been on the forefront of healthcare by operating clinics and building hospitals to care for the sick and the injured.

Christians have always constructed alternatives to broken social systems. Public education continues to be a source of controversy among believers, leading to the Christian school movement. Despite being required to fund public education with their tax dollars, this did not stop Christians from forming and funding distinctively Christian schools that allowed them to do what would not be allowed in a public school. Despite tax dollars funding the abortion mills of Planned Parenthood, Christians have established and funded thousands of pregnancy care centers to provide a Christian presence for women facing unexpected or unwelcome pregnancies. Taxpayer-funded welfare programs have not stopped Christians from operating and funding ministries who have proven to be more effective in moving people off welfare and into employment, home ownership and stronger family life.

Historically, the Church built much of modern healthcare, including hospital systems. Many health systems still bear Protestant and Catholic names, e.g., Baptist Health, Trinity Health and hospital systems such as Baylor, Presbyterian, Methodist, etc. Taxpayers did not fund this crucial social infrastructure. It was the product of Christian philanthropy used strategically to advance Kingdom values and live out the Gospel.

It is time to act again. It is time for the Church to return to the forefront of healthcare and this is precisely why Christian Healthcare Centers exists.

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