Senate again sends House an informed consent bill

01/22/2014 06:14 PM

As it’s done for the better part of a decade, the Republican-led Senate passed a bill to require women who are considering an abortion to have a face to face consultation with a doctor or private health care professional 24 hours before the procedure.

This year’s version, Senate Bill 3, passed 33-5.

Sen. Sara Beth Gregory, R-Monticello, who is sponsor of the bill, said it would give women the opportunity to carefully contemplate all of the factors related to having an abortion through a face to face consultation.

Currently, health care professionals can explain the risks and the procedure through a recorded phone message.

“What this bill is really about is to provide full information to women who are making a decision that has a life long impact on them and can be a like ending decision for the unborn child they are carrying,” Gregory said. “Most women do not have health care training, do not have expertise in the risks that accompany a surgical procedure.”

Democratic Sen. Reginald Thomas of Lexington was among those who argued against SB 3.

“The bill is a guilt trip that we want to impose on women,” Thomas said. “We want to engage in humiliation and embarrassment and shaming them because of their decision, which they have a constitutional private right to do regarding early termination pregnancies.”

Republican Senate Pro Tem Katie Stine of Southgate disagreed with Thomas saying that the bill is about respecting women.

“It ensures that they are given all of the facts about making a life or death decision,” she said. “Not only a life changing decision for themselves but for their baby.”

The bill now moves on to the House for their consideration.


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