Missouri State Senator Wants Docs to Invade Patients' Privacy
Meet Tom Dempsey, a threat to the privacy of women in Missouri. State Senator Dempsey recently introduced a bill, SB 792, that would have doctors invade their patients’ privacy and require doctors to try to give patients information that supports his religious agenda even if the patients do not want it. Emphasis added by me in the bill’s text, below:
SB 792 – This act modifies provisions relating to abortion.
ABORTION RECORD KEEPING
This act modifies the laws on abortion reporting and recordkeeping requirements. Currently, an individual abortion report for each abortion performed or induced upon a woman shall be completed by her attending physician. This act provides that the individual report shall include information required by the United States Standard Report of Induced Termination of Pregnancy published by the National Center for Health Statistics. The report shall also include information on the type of abortion procedure used, including the specific surgical or nonsurgical method or the specific abortion-inducing drug or drugs employed. In addition, the report shall include the reason or reasons the woman sought the abortion, including specific medical, social, economic, or other factors and whether the woman used any method of family planning during the time she became pregnant, and if so, the specific method employed.
This act also adds information to be collected and evaluated for the annual abortion report published by the Department of Health and Senior Services. The report shall include data from abortions performed or induced and post-abortion care provided. The report shall also specify the gestational age, by weekly increments, at which abortions were performed or induced. The report shall not include any information that would allow the public to identify a specific patient, a physician who performed or induced an abortion or who provided post-abortion care, or a hospital or abortion facility where the abortion was performed or induced, or which provided post-abortion care.
The information shall be voluntarily provided by the woman seeking or obtaining the abortion, but the abortion facility, hospital, or physician shall make all reasonable efforts to collect the information required by this section and shall in no way dissuade, hinder in any way, or otherwise discourage the woman from providing the information required by this act.
This act also provides that any person who knowingly violates the confidentiality of any records, reports or documents maintained by the hospital or abortion facility, or received by the department shall be guilty of a class D felony.
This act modifies the informed consent requirements for an abortion by adding new requirements to be obtained at least twenty-four hours prior to an abortion. Some of the new requirements include presenting to the pregnant woman various new printed materials and videos, to be developed by the Department of Health and Senior Services by November 30, 2010, detailing the risks of an abortion and the physiological characteristics of an unborn child at two-week gestational increments. The woman must also be provided with the gestational age of the unborn child at the time the abortion is to be performed and must be given an opportunity to view, at least 24 hours prior to an abortion, an active ultrasound of the unborn child and hear the heartbeat of the unborn child, if the heartbeat is audible. Prior to an abortion being performed past twenty-two weeks gestational age, the woman must be provided information regarding the possibility of the abortion causing pain to the unborn child.
In addition to the written informed consent, the act requires the physician or a qualified professional to discuss the medical assistance and counseling resources available, advise the woman of the father’s liability for child support, and provide information about the Alternatives to Abortion Program. All information required to be provided to a woman shall be presented to her individually in the physical presence of the woman. The abortion cannot be performed until the woman certifies in writing on a checklist form that she has been presented all the required information and that she has been given the opportunity to view an ultrasound, and to choose to have an anesthetic or analgesic administered to the unborn child.
This act requires the physician or qualified professional to provide the woman with access to a telephone and information about rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters and obtaining orders of protection should the physician have reason to believe the woman is being coerced into having an abortion.
These provisions are identical to SCS/SB 793 (2010).
PROVIDERS NOT AUTHORIZED TO PERFORM ABORTION
Notwithstanding any other provision in law allowing a person to provide services related to pregnancy, delivery and postpartum services, no person other than a licensed physician can perform or induce an abortion. Anyone violating the provision is guilty of a class B felony.
What an utterly disgusting attempt to invade a woman’s privacy and the doctor-patient relationship by Senator Dempsey.