an After abortion: "19 Shocking Post Abortion Depression Statistics" from National Health Council (NHC) website

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Saturday, August 15, 2015

"19 Shocking Post Abortion Depression Statistics" from National Health Council (NHC) website

And that's their article title, not mine, but there's a "But" that's leaving me wary.

The site is called and it's hosted by the National Health Council (NHC) since March 2011. Their membership directory is listed here.

The purpose of the site is

"to assist unfunded NIH applicants in finding other funding opportunities. Called, the database will allow applicants to enter some basic information about their unfunded NIH grant applications in order to make that information available to other potential funding organizations.

"The new site was announced by the National Health Council (NHC). Members of the NHC will initially have access to the database to be able to assess funding possibilities. The members include more than 40 patient advocacy organizations - from the Alzheimer’s Association to the Spina Bifida Association - representing a diverse group of potential funders who wish to take advantage of the rigor of the NIH peer review process to identify promising proposals. Ultimately, the NHC plans to expand access to their database to include other types of funders.

"Grant applicants will visit the website, register and create a password and enter basic project information, such as an abstract and score from the NIH peer review process."

The University of Texas-San Antonio Health Science Center website explains how it works in more detail:
"The National Health Council (NHC), with input from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has developed a web database designed to bring researchers together with patient advocacy organizations and other funding sources. It’s called HealthResearchFunding.Org.

"How it works: Researchers whose proposals have been peer reviewed by either the NIH or by an NHC member patient advocacy organization will be invited to register with HealthReseachFunding.Org and add an abstract. They will have the ability to also search for NHC member organizations that fund research. NHC member organizations will be able to search for research proposals, search for individual researchers, and search and view other funding organizations. They will also be able to upload requests for proposals, including posting ideas for collaboration with other funding sources.
According to a 23-year-old citation on Wikipedia: "The NIH now controls more than 50 percent of all funding for health research, and 85 percent of all funding for health studies in universities."

This article, dated Mar 19, 2015, was perhaps was covered by folks already back then, but we'll post on it now (remember, we've been on and off hiatus so long, there are plenty of things we've missed while working our dayjobs!):

Women may suffer from depression after giving birth to their child just as they may suffer from depression after having an abortion. Many Pro Life groups will jump on the post abortion depression statistics as proof that abortion is “wrong,” but that logic would also make giving birth wrong. Sometimes women feel that it is necessary to have an abortion. That necessity may also put these women at a higher risk of future health problems.

Facts About Post Abortion Depression

[Blogger's note: #7 and #8 are about post-birth, not post-abortion]

1. Women who have an abortion are 3x more likely that women of child-bearing age in the general population to commit suicide.
2. The increased risk percentage of women who have an abortion compared to women in the general population of having at least one mental health issue: 81%.
3. Teen girls are up to 10x more likely to attempt suicide then their counterparts who have not had an abortion.
4. Teen girls who have had an abortion are up to 4x more likely to successfully commit suicide when compared to older women who have had an abortion.
5. About 45% of women who have had an abortion report having suicidal feelings immediately following their procedure.
6. Only 1% of women of child-bearing age seek psychiatric help for mental health issues in the 9 months prior to having an abortion. After having an abortion, the percentage rises to 1.5%.
7. Within a year after first-time mothers gave birth, 7 per 1,000 women were treated for mental-health issues, in comparison to 4 per 1,000 before baby.
8. Up to 33% of mothers will experience depression at least once between the time their child is born and the child’s 12th birthday.
9. 1995 data suggests that the rate of deliberate self-harm is 70% higher after abortion than after childbirth.
10. The British Journal of Psychiatry found an 81% increased risk of mental trauma after abortion.
11. At least 27% of women who have an abortion will have a moment of suicidal ideation afterward.
12. A study of California Medicaid patients found that the risks of suicide increase by 154% for women after they have an abortion.
13. 2 in 3 women who have a late abortion [after 12 weeks] suffer from the clinical definition of PTSD.
14. 40% of women in one UK survey said that they wanted to keep their child, but the pressures of others to have an abortion forced their hand in the decision.
15. Women whose first pregnancies ended in abortion are 65% more likely to score in the ‘high-risk’ range for clinical depression than women whose first pregnancies resulted in a birth.
16. Abortion may be a risk factor for subsequent depression in women for up to 8 years after the pregnancy event.
17. Women who have had an abortion are 34% more likely to develop an anxiety disorder.
18. 110%. That’s the increased risk of alcohol abuse in women who have had an abortion.
19. The number of women who have an abortion every year in the United States: 827,000.

The article then remarkably embeds two videos about post-abortive women talking about their grief and remorse, one of these from the web-tv series "Surrender The Secret" from Knock-TV/ which we wrote about in December 2013.

What I can't figure out though, is that the article, in fact, all their articles, strangely lack links, citations to research sources, footnotes, even authors/researchers' names. And it seems that nowhere on the public website is a reference to its parent NHC, an "About" page or any way to learn about them except by the contact form to the site's editor. I had to Google to find out who they were and what the site was about.

Yet when you Google "HealthReseachFunding.Org" for the NEWS clips, or search on the site name and a topic, like "abortion," there are a number of citations of them in several varied publications.

I'm stumped as to why they list no citations, links or notes. It's unclear whether any of their "articles" are actual conclusions from research already conducted, or NIH-peer-reviewed proposals for research on these bullet-points, or requests for proposals or ideas for collaboration on same. Yet they're getting quoted enough by some small news media as an already-researched, legitimate source.

Does anyone know what we're really reading on this site, this article? While many if not all of the facts listed, we're familiar with in at least some similar variation from our own years of digging up peer-reviewed, published research on these very issues, we just don't like sites that don't cite their sources.

The article at least concludes with the great question,

What Can We Do To Help?

The #1 thing we can do as a community is to help women who are facing a difficult choice in whatever way we can. A majority of pregnancies that occur are not planned and a majority of unplanned pregnancies wind up as an abortion. Either way, however, a woman who becomes pregnant will automatically face an increased risk of depression no matter what choice she has regarding her future. Instead of pre-judging each woman’s circumstance, providing services and supports makes a lot more sense.
We agree.

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