What the Protection from Coerced and Unsafe Abortions Act Does — and Doesn't — Do
¨ In hundreds of cases each day, pregnant women are being pressured, coerced, or even forced into unwanted abortions. Often this pressure may even include acts of violence against these women.
¨ Most abortion providers have abandoned any effort to screen for coercion and other risks in order to reduce costs and maximize profits.
¨ Women are suffering from avoidable physical and psychological complications that may have been prevented or minimized if the proper pre-abortion screening standards had been met.
¨ Without adequate screening for coercion and other risk factors it is impossible for abortion providers to give their patients an informed medical recommendation which will best address a patient's individual needs and risks.
What the Women's Health Protection Act Does
¨ It clarifies in statute the duty of physicians to screen for statistically proven risk factors which identify women at higher risk of physical or negative complications of abortion.
¨ It clarifies the duty of abortion providers to ask whether a patient is feeling pressured into the abortion. This gives the woman and the doctor the opportunity to openly discuss any pressures she faces to submit to an unwanted abortion and to consider alternatives, if appropriate, such as group counseling for the patient and those pressuring her.
¨ It restores the accountability of physicians for making informed medical recommendations based on each women’s unique profile of risks, wants, and needs.
What the Women's Health Protection Act Does NOT Do
¨ It does not impose any burdens on women seeking abortions.
¨ It does not ban any abortions nor does it make any abortions illegal, even in those cases where a woman may face elements of coercion or may be at higher risk of one or more adverse reactions.
¨ It does not impose any requirements on abortion providers that are contrary to the standard of care for screening that applies to other medical procedures.
¨ It does not require any enforcement by the State. The provisions of the bill defining negligent screening are enforced solely by injured women through civil remedies.
¨ It will reduce the number of women who undergo unwanted abortions, sparing them the grief, guilt, depression, and trauma that often follow an unwanted abortion.
¨ It will reduce abortion rates and better enable women who don't want abortions to welcome an unplanned child into their lives.
¨ This statute will correct a loophole in the law that shields abortion providers from proper liability when they neglect to provide reasonable medical advice, which can only be done after proper screening of the individual patient's needs and risk factors.
¨ It will reduce the number of abortion related physical and/or psychological injuries suffered by women. This is achieved by creating an incentive for abortion providers to improve substandard pre- and post-abortion counseling programs so that they properly address the pre-abortion risk factors and post-abortion reactions that effect many of their patients.
¨ It will reverse the decline in the standard of care in abortion clinics.