With COVID-19 spreading through the United States, state and federal officials took extra precautions and shut down nonessential services to preserve medical equipment necessary to combat the disease.

In some states, this shutdown includes abortion clinics, since they use personal protective equipment needed by health workers confronting the new coronavirus.

As of this writing, government officials in Ohio, Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi have included abortion clinics in their lists of nonessential services, effectively shutting down the facilities for the time being.

At least 11 Planned Parenthood clinics in California have shut down due to the coronavirus, but some clinics in Texas and Ohio say they will continue abortions, despite the orders. An abortion clinic in Louisiana was caught trying to facilitate an abortion, defying the ban put in place by state officials.

Abortion advocates are outraged at the closures, and the defiance and reaction raise the question: With so many lives at risk and so much uncertainty right now in the medical field, why must abortions, of all things, continue?

Of course, pro-choice activists claim abortions must continue because of the obvious medical implications of pregnancy: Babies continue to gestate whether or not there’s a global pandemic. Although pro-life advocates would say this growth is one of the many miracles of life and a reason we must continue to promote life at every stage, abortion clinics want to use it as a reason to continue.

The Washington Post reported that Amy Hagstrom Miller, president of Whole Woman’s Health Alliance, which operates three clinics in Texas, said: “Emergency actions during a global pandemic should advance health and safety for us all, not force people to delay much-needed care and possibly exacerbate their health situations by doing so.”

It’s unfortunate that pro-choice activists still want clinics to perform abortions with the excuse that doing so is medically necessary, or that its saves the mother’s life when, in fact, these types of abortions are rare.

In 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported over 90% of abortions are performed during the first trimester, and not for medical reasons at all.

The news media pretended to be aghast that the coronavirus affected abortion procedures, of all things. Politico reported that “Anti-abortion forces led by Republican governors” led to the closure of clinics. The New York Times reported that the coronavirus has become an “excuse to restrict abortions.”

The progressive left is so committed to continuing abortions for the sake of women’s health that it is willing to risk women’s health by doing so even as the globe is threatened by a highly contagious virus that few understand or can predict.

If this doesn’t communicate hypocrisy to women in general and abortion advocates in particular, I don’t know what will.

Even the most ardent defender of Roe v. Wade should be willing to understand the gravity of this moment, take a stand for the health of our entire society, and support a temporary pause of abortions so that medical supplies needed to slow this pandemic can go to facilities that are facing down coronavirus in real time.

Failure to do this says as much about the innate self-centeredness of the abortion movement as it does their misunderstanding of what health care really means.

For whatever it’s worth right now, Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves said his office isn’t having any disobedience about abortion. Reeves, a Republican, said he would take action if the state’s one remaining abortion clinic fails to comply with his order to stand down.

“We’ll take whatever action we need to protect not only the lives of unborn children, but also the lives of anyone who may contract this particular virus,” he said.

The abortion debate can and will continue another day. For right now, when specific medical equipment is needed to save hundreds of thousands of lives and abortion clinics take that equipment unnecessarily, this is the only correct response.