Mirroring the situation in Kansas earlier this year, a new law has been proposed in Pennsylvania that would effectively close most, if not all, abortion clinics. Bill 732 will require clinics remodel their buildings to follow the codes and rules of ambulatory surgical facilities. At the same time the bill would require a registered nurse to be present in whatever room a patient is in. According to Pennsylvanians for Choice, these new measures would force most of the 20 clinics in the state to close because they do not have the time or resources to renovate their buildings.
A hearing in North Dakota on the outlawing of drugs used in medical abortions has been put on hold again. The hearing will not happen until sometime next year. North Dakota passed a law earlier this year to ban the “off-label” use of drugs which are commonly used in early medical abortions. This would effectively make medical abortion illegal in North Dakota. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists as well as the World Health Organization support the use of these drugs for medical abortion.
Ohio’s controversial “heartbeat bill” is currently awaiting a Senate vote. Supporters of the bill have wasted no time mobilizing their target audience. TV commercials supporting the bill will air next week during The O’Reilly Factor and Hannity.
Michigan has introduced legislation that will make physicians screen patients for abortion coercion and domestic violence before they perform abortions. Physicians will be required to tell victims of domestic violence that coercion is illegal and grounds for civil action, and delay the abortion for 24 hours. They will also be required to have pamphlets on domestic violence in their office for patients to view. Unfortunately this bill does not cover reproductive coercion in whole; it only addresses “abortion coercion” and leaves out any redress for women being coerced into pregnancy and motherhood. While the bill states it will offer “financial compensation” to women who seek civil action over their abuse, it is also unclear how the state will help protect and empower women (and their potential children) from further abuse.