Ms. magazine  -- more than a magazine a movement

SIGN UP FOR MS. DIGEST, JOBS, NEWS AND ALERTS

FEMINIST WIRE NEWSBRIEFS

ABOUT
SEE CURRENT ISSUE
SHOP MS. STORE
MS. IN THE CLASSROOM
FEMINIST DAILY WIRE
FEMINIST RESOURCES
PRESS
JOBS AT MS.
READ BACK ISSUES
CONTACT
RSS (XML)
 
feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

September-27-10

TX Restricts Informed Consent Laws for Abortion Clinics

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott ruled on Friday that Texas abortion facilities may no longer use prerecorded phone messages to inform women about the risks of abortion prior to the procedure, a practice that formerly complied with state law. According to the Examiner Houston, Abbott also ruled that Texas law does not require a doctor to be present when a woman takes mifepristone, alternatively known as RU-486 or the abortion pill. Both of the rulings were at the request of anti-choice Republican State Representative Frank Corte Jr.

In January, Corte asked the attorney general to determine if the Texas Department of State Health Services had adhered to the state's disclosure laws when it permitted the use of the prerecorded messages to fulfill the legal requirements. State law requires that women provide voluntary and informed consent before receiving an abortion. The Examiner reports that Corte claimed using such messages does not fulfill the law's requirements because patients are "not able to participate" in the conversation and may be listening to a recording made by a doctor who is not their attending physician for the procedure. According to the Examiner, Attorney General Abbott agreed with Corte's assessment, writing that "If the legislature desired that such alternatives be available, it could have easily provided for them in the statute. It failed to do so here."

Kathi Seay, a spokesperson for Corte, told the Dallas Morning News that "abortion providers, rather than giving informed intent in person, do not allow a girl to have an interaction beforehand." Kelly Hart, Planned Parenthood of North Texas' director of public affairs, disagreed, stated that doctors do have face-to-face discussions with their patients before the procedure even though they are not required to do so by state law, according to the Dallas Morning News.

Corte also alleged that the Texas Occupations Code requires that a patient's doctor is present when she ingests mifepristone to terminate her pregnancy. However, Abbott rejected Corte's reasoning, stating that Corte's proposed requirement is not legally enforceable by state law.

Media Resources: Examiner Houston 9/25/10; Dallas Morning News 9/25/10


© Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms. magazine

If you liked this story, consider making a tax-deductible donation to support Ms. magazine.

 

 

Send to a Friend
Their
Your
Comments
(optional)


More Feminist News

11/20/2014 Ms. Wonder Awards Honor Young Grassroots Leaders in Anti-Violence, Fair Wage Movements - "I don't think I've ever been in a room with so much personal history, and so much future," Gloria Steinem opened. Today, Ms. . . .
 
11/20/2014 Transgender Day of Remembrance Raises Awareness of Dangers of Transphobia - Transgender people are about 400 times more likely to be assaulted or murdered than cisgender people. . . .
 
11/20/2014 Federal Appeals Court Rejects Priests for Life Challenge to Birth Control Coverage Rule - In a victory for women's health, a unanimous panel of the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit on Friday rejected a challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) contraceptive coverage benefit brought by Priests for Life, the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Washington and other religiously affiliated non-profit organizations. Judge Nina Pillard, a former law professor who was nominated to the DC Circuit by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate in December, wrote the opinion for the Court, which found that the ACA birth control benefit did not substantially burden or violate non-profits' religious freedom. Under the Affordable Care Act, health insurance companies must cover the full cost of all FDA-approved contraceptives - including the pill, IUDs, and emergency contraception - without requiring co-pays or cost-sharing. . . .