The following article is a synopsis of an episode from our Life Chat Podcast series. To listen to the full episode, click here.
Pro-life healthcare is a highly contested issue in the pro-life movement, largely because of the highly politicized nature of it. Louis Brown, Executive Director of the Christ Medicus Foundation, explains how his organization is engaged in a continuous attempt to provide the best and safest healthcare option to as many people as possible, using their faith as the backbone and basis for their work.
In a Life Chat interview with Mary Kate Knorr, Louis Brown tells the story of how Christ Medicus was founded in the late 1990s by Michael O’Dea, who “saw the need to advance the culture of life particularly in healthcare.” One of their major missions is “to share the love of God in healthcare.” They are very passionate about this for many reasons–one of the main reasons being that “the majority of decisions about whether or not we have a pro-life culture are made within the healthcare arena.”
This is a hefty claim, but Brown firmly believes it is true. The pro-life policy they are aiming for, he elaborates, is to respect “the right to life of each person, ensuring they have medical care.” Using this goal, Christ Medicus is working to expand and to bring Catholic healthcare all throughout the United States. Brown says that he is working in this ministry to continue this mission to respect religious freedom.
Brown says, “the common outcry for the right to work, the right to health… those rights are illusory if the right to life is not respected.” This is a central point in the pro-life movement in general: if the right to life is not put as a priority, what use is there in having other rights? It’s not that other rights are not important, they most certainly are, it is that the right to life should trump all other rights because this right is the most central and the basis of all others.
Brown goes on to explain that “the best way to secure the right each person has to medical care is to have a strong, robust safety net.” He says that this is not easy to do, and especially not easy to do in the highly politicized medical climate we currently live in, but Christ Medicus does this in the best way they know of.
He says their main goal is to ensure that “those folks who have a lot of challenges in their life, whether its financial or physical, have the help they need,” Additionally, they believe “a strong partnership between the market economy and the strong safety net allows us to flourish in the United States.”
It saddens him and all those involved with the Christ Medicus Foundation that our culture has almost totally given over to the culture of death.” But the goal and work of the Christ Medicus Foundation is to turn the tide and bring America back to valuing the life and dignity of each person.