When abortion’s only a click away - Pregnancy help’s next mandate: Increase speed to care

Heartbeat International President Jor-El Godsey addresses the 2024 Heartbeat Conference/Lisa Bourne

“As a movement, it is time to aggressively add virtual ministry outreach through telecare and telehealth,” Jor-El Godsey, president of Heartbeat International, told attendees of the organization’s 53rd Annual Conference on Thursday, April 25.

Without minimizing the need to continue opening more brick-and-mortar pregnancy help centers to give women in-person, ongoing compassionate care, he said that alone won’t address the abortion industry’s changing business paradigm: delivering “death-dealing chemicals … right to their doorsteps.”

“There's a more immediate way to take on Big Abortion’s paradigm shift, their business model, and that's by leveraging our skills and compassion, not just inside the brick-and-mortar, but to engage her where she's at when she's seeking answers,” Godsey said. “And those moments are increasingly outside of our regular weekday business hours.”

“Today, barely 2% of our movement is engaged in telecare and telehealth,” he said. “This is simply not enough to battle the giant that is Big Abortion. We cannot let the abortion industry be the only one who can help her in that moment when she's looking.”

“We as a movement must do more to incorporate virtual outreach as an integral method to champion lifesaving ministry, just like we did when we added mobile unit outreach,” said Godsey. “Our best opportunity is for each of our organizations to envision a new team of virtual missionaries.”

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Godsey cited service delivery stats across the movement that show “it takes us around two days to get her from there to where we are with our compassionate people and our ultrasound equipment.”

“But with chemical abortion so readily available, that is no longer working as well as it has been,” he said.

“We need to move that first engagement to the woman who, apart from our intervention, might never have the chance to darken the door of a pregnancy help center,” Godsey said, adding, “We need to increase our speed of service, which is really our speed to care. And greater speed to care will mean greater speed to success.”

New tools for virtual, off-hours service

Heartbeat International has anticipated this need, according to Godsey, and worked to upgrade its Next Level Center Management Solution to augment pregnancy centers’ current level of care. He revealed a new tool to help accomplish this.

“We’re excited to announce the PHC in Your Pocket upgrade that allows pregnancy help to happen anywhere you are so that you can reach her anywhere she is,” he said. “Imagine that moment of decision before her, where we can reach into her situation with loving compassion and begin that caring relationship with her right at that moment.”

“You can add to your brick-and-mortar the ability for every team member, every advocate, every coach, every nurse to create that relationship the moment she connects with you and continue that relationship wherever they are,” said Godsey. “And all of the information you need is with you wherever you are. Our Next Level 2024 has a fresh look and new features that can be a part of making this new paradigm a reality for your lifesaving mission.”

Godsey was quick to add that his aim was not to sell Next Level software, but that he hoped other software companies would also roll out similar functionality.

“This is about going into the next generation of this movement,” he said.

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Option Line and Abortion Pill Rescue response teams are hearing from increasing numbers of women who are even then sitting with the abortion pill, sometimes prescribed without any medical screening, sometimes given to them by a friend or purchased at the back of a local grocery store.

“She needs the LOVE Approach in that very moment,” Godsey said. “She needs to hear what we know well: that the God of the universe is in this with her and can help her through these moments.”

“Envision a new team of virtual missionaries”

“To do this we'll need new learning and cutting-edge practices like PHC In Your Pocket. We'll need new metrics that create better analysis so we can find this new era of effective impact. Our friends at Life on Belay have been helping us develop those.”

“We'll need new team members to join us for this type of specialized outreach,” he said. “Even just adding a few hours each week through virtual outreach will be a major step toward adapting to the new abortion landscape.”

When it comes to staffing to cover virtual interventions for women seeking urgent pregnancy help outside regular business hours, Godsey saw good news in recent events.

“The good Lord arranged a global training event just a few years ago for all of us to get oriented to video interactions and remote relationship,” he said, referring to the COVID-19 pandemic.

That unexpected training season “exploded a new level of a remote-based workforce and I believe that among these are those God will call into this very type of outreach,” Godsey said. “Their new workspace…allows them to give their time right where they are and where they're most used to doing so: in their own homes.”

“That makes them flexible to be in the new non-business-hours outreach,” he added. “That is going to be critical to meet the challenge that Big Abortion has set before us.”

Building on a history of adaptation and innovation

Godsey pointed back to the pregnancy help movement’s more than 50-year history of commitment to doing whatever it takes to serve women in crisis. He recalled the earliest days when answering a personal landline offered the first line of defense for women, and pregnancy testing was done on “first morning urine samples” carried in by clients.

Educational materials became available on VHS and then DVD and then by streaming. When pregnancy tests could be easily found at every Dollar Store, ultrasound services arose, growing from use in four centers in 1992, to over 2000 (roughly three-fourths of centers) 30 years later. Mobile clinics helped centers take their services on the road to meet women where they were, far beyond the neighborhood of a brick-and-mortar location.

In that same spirit of innovation, “We need to adapt, but it simply cannot take 30 years,” Godsey said. “We have to move faster so we can reach more [women] and not let the abortion industry’s avarice box us out from the intervention window.”

Godsey concluded with a reference to Habakuk 2:2: “Inscribe the vision so that those that read it can run.”

“The vision is before us,” he said. “We can see the destination, if not, all of the path. We only need to take those first steps. Can you see it with me?

“It is time for a new expansion of our impact by expanding our brick-and-mortar ministries into digital outreach,” Godsey said. “The trends are clear…We can't leave her in the tyranny of urgency Big Abortion has created. We can’t not be there when she's being pressed into a life-changing decision in her bedroom, in her dorm room, or her bathroom. Can you see it with me?”

“Our history, our heritage is to adapt our methods and our methodology so that we can continue to be effective,” he said. “Our mission is sure, but the methods and methodologies need to change. It's time for all of us to make history again. Can you see it with me?”

Editor's note: Heartbeat International manages Pregnancy Help News.

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