OK

It's for their own "protection", don'tchya know?



Yesterday, Republicans in Michigan went "there", introducing legislation that essentially requires a woman to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound probe just prior to having an abortion. Their justification? It "protects" women.

Some excerpts from H.B. 4187 (pdf):

THE PERFORMANCE OF A DIAGNOSTIC ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION OF THE FETUS AT LEAST 2 HOURS BEFORE AN ABORTION IS PERFORMED WITH THE WOMAN GIVEN THE OPTION TO VIEW THE ACTIVE ULTRASOUND IMAGE OF THE FETUS, HEAR THE FETAL HEARTBEAT, RECEIVE A PHYSICAL PICTURE OF THE ULTRASOUND IMAGE OF THE FETUS, AND HEAR AN EXPLANATION OF THE ULTRASOUND IMAGE OF THE FETUS. THE PERFORMANCE OF A DIAGNOSTIC ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION OF THE FETUS, NOW A STANDARD PRACTICE AT ABORTION FACILITIES, PROTECTS THE HEALTH OF THE WOMAN SEEKING AN ABORTION BY VERIFYING AN INTRAUTERINE PREGNANCY, AS UNDIAGNOSED ECTOPIC PREGNANCIES CAN RESULT IN POTENTIALLY FATAL COMPLICATIONS AND INFERTILITY. THE PERFORMANCE OF A DIAGNOSTIC ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION OF THE FETUS FURTHER PROTECTS THE INTERESTS OF THE WOMAN SEEKING AN ABORTION BY ASSESSING THE VIABILITY OF THE FETUS AND CONFIRMING THE APPROXIMATE GESTATIONAL AGE OF THE FETUS, AS THIS INFORMATION IS NECESSARY IN ORDER TO DETERMINE APPROPRIATE MEDICAL CARE FOR THE WOMAN SEEKING AN ABORTION. {...}

[T]he the physician or qualified person assisting the physician shall: PERFORM A DIAGNOSTIC ULTRASOUND EXAMINATION IN ORDER TO VERIFY AN INTRAUTERINE PREGNANCY, ASSESS VIABILITY OF THE FETUS, CONFIRM GESTATIONAL AGE OF THE FETUS, AND ENSURE FULLY INFORMED CONSENT TO THE ABORTION. THE PHYSICIAN OR QUALIFIED PERSON ASSISTING THE PHYSICIAN SHALL ENSURE THAT THE ULTRASOUND SCREEN IS TURNED TOWARD THE PATIENT TO ENABLE HER TO EASILY VIEW THE ACTIVE ULTRASOUND IMAGE OF THE FETUS; SHALL INFORM THE PATIENT THAT THE ACTIVE ULTRASOUND IMAGE OF THE FETUS IS VISIBLE AND SHE MAY VIEW THE IMAGE ON THE ULTRASOUND SCREEN IF SHE DESIRES; SHALL PROVIDE THE PATIENT WITH THE OPPORTUNITY TO HEAR OR DECLINE TO HEAR THE FETAL HEARTBEAT AS CONFIRMATION OF A VIABLE PREGNANCY...

As my friend Amy Kerr-Hardin at Democracy Tree points out, the language is vague but, in effect, requires the use of the transvaginal probe:
The new bill uses this same language verbatim. Sure, it does not specifically say “vaginal probe” (too crass), but OB-Gyn Dr. Charlene Abernethy reviewed the language last year and found it to effectively require a transvaginal probe. She explained that it’s a given that any facility providing pregnancy terminations will have the necessary equipment to perform a transvaginal ultrasound. The bill removes the decision from the physician as to whether to perform a transvaginal versus a transabdominal (non-invasive) ultrasound, it demands they choose the one that provides the best image — and that’s a vaginal probe. Because this legislation additionally denies the patient the choice, it’s rape. By any other name, it’s still state-sanctioned rape. By law and by definition.
Make no mistake, the Michigan Republicans' War on Women is still being waged and they are only getting more audacious.

More from LOLGOP at Eclectablog HERE.

Oh, yeah, in case you thought Governor Snyder's veto last year of bills requiring women to carry a special insurance rider on their health insurance -- ANY insurance -- to cover abortions meant that they are done with that issue? They aren't. Yesterday, they reintroduced the same legislation.

[Graphic by Anne C. Savage | Eclectablog]

Originally posted to Eclectablog - eclectic blogging for a better tomorrow on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 05:35 AM PST.

Also republished by Abortion and Your Government at Work.

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