A debate on a controversial state House of Representatives bill, which calls for a woman to receive an ultrasound at least 24 hours prior to an abortion, was cancelled by House Majority Leader Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny County) because of “concerns raised by the medical community, among others.”
Steve Miskin, a spokesman for Rep. Turzai said that the bill, “will not run unless or until a consensus is reached,” with doctors.
Physicians, including many Pennsylvania Medical Society (PAMED) members, have been instrumental in delaying House consideration of the bill while physicians’ concerns are being addressed.
“If enacted, House Bill 1077 would significantly jeopardize the open dialogue within the physician-patient relationship, which is the very foundation upon which modern medicine was built,” said Marilyn J. Heine, MD, president of (PAMED) in a letter to the House.
HB 1077, also known as the Women’s Right to Know Act, in addition to requiring women to receive the ultrasound to determine the gestational age, also would establish the patient’s right to view the ultrasound and observe or hear the fetal heartbeat during that ultrasound.
Contact your legislators and urge them to oppose this bill.
PAMED has no official position on abortion but is opposing this bill because it would set a dangerous precedent by legislating specific diagnostic protocols.
Numerous media outlets, including the Wall Street Journal and the Patriot-News, have referred to PAMED’s opposition to the bill.
The bill was introduced by Rep. Kathy Rapp (R-Warren), and has recently lost several legislative sponsors.