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Strict Abortion Measures Enacted in Oklahoma

post #1 of 56
Thread Starter 
HOUSTON — The Oklahoma Legislature voted Tuesday to override the governor’s vetoes of two abortion measures, one of which requires women to undergo an ultrasound and listen to a detailed description of the fetus before getting an abortion.

Though other states have passed similar measures requiring women to have ultrasounds, Oklahoma’s law goes further, mandating that a doctor or technician set up the monitor so the woman can see it and describe the heart, limbs and organs of the fetus. No exceptions are made for rape and incest victims.

A second measure passed into law on Tuesday prevents women who have had a disabled baby from suing a doctor for withholding information about birth defects while the child was in the womb.

(see link for the rest of the article)
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/28/us/28abortion.html

I can not adequately describe my anger about both measures, but especially the measure that allows doctors to LIE to their patients in order to dupe them into having a baby they would not otherwise have.
post #2 of 56
Yeah, the first ones bad enough, but the second? Its now OK for doctors to *LIE* to their patients??? As if we don't have enough issues with doctors and trust already....
post #3 of 56




post #4 of 56




I can't even think coherent words in response to this ...
post #5 of 56
Throwing this out here.

Okay, what if the Doctor doesn't tell the woman the baby has a problem. A problem that requires a medical team in place as soon as the baby is born.

So the baby is born with the problem and then dies because the medical team is not in place. Can the Doctor be sued?

What about the emotional stress that is caused by the Doctor not informing the Mother. The Mother is unable to prepare herself mentally and emotionally and get support in place. Can she sue the Doctor for emotional anquish or something like that?

As a Mom of a child with special needs, I WOULD WANT TO KNOW! Not to have an abortion (though I believe in choice), but to prepare myself and my family. Educate myself, get Doctors in place!

I am so angry I am going to spit nails.

Just asking...
post #6 of 56
Katwrangler - I think you've hit the issue on the head, which is that politicians are dictating how doctors could handle their patients. I think any doctor would have to have it in teh notes about the problem with something that said - PATIENT DOES NOT KNOW!, but it would be very weird not to have the medical team in place during the delivery. Unless the mom up & decided to hb or had a very quick labor and did it unassisted.


I'm totally confused how this piece of legislation is not going to get overturned when the right case (which will probably be the first) comes up, as I'm pretty sure this flies in the face of the 14th amendment consitutionally. I see this one quickly moving through the federal courts...

Re: suit for emotional anguish/damage... I think the despite the law the first route would be malpractice - failure to practice medicine in accordance with accepted standards (this would include disclosing problems with a fetus). For instance if a woman had a quad screening and the results came back with possible indications for trisomy issues (21, 13 etc.) I'm not sure how a doctor in good faith hid or fail to disclose that to a patient, because it would hinder the consent process for the next set of interventions (CV sampling or amniocentsis)
post #7 of 56
So are they going to outlaw ALL prenatal testing and ultrasounds? I mean why have the tests if the Doctors aren't going to tell you the results?
post #8 of 56
The *only* good thing about this thread is the respect people have been showing and how it has *not* become an abortion debate.

Thank you all for that!
post #9 of 56
Yeah, I'm not seeing what the point of performing the tests is (and in many cases these are ELECTIVE tests) if the results can be lied about to the patients. You go in to the Dr for an Amnio to see if there are issues, if the Dr is allowed to lie to you what was the point of the test?

And how this relates to the first part is awful. A girl is raped by a relative, decides for her emotional well being that she can't go through with the pregnancy... then she has to be forced to watch the US... lets say she changes her mind but only barely and decides to go through with the pregnancy. But oh wait, the babe has a severe medical issue and probably wont survive. And guess what, the Dr knew about it during that fateful US. I mean, how much emotional trauma do they really need to inflict on the poor girl?
post #10 of 56
Drs should always be required to give patients full disclosure as to their condition and health status. So, I do have big problems with the second law shielding Drs that withhold info. I don't have problems with the first one though. I see the first law as upholding full disclosure.

And I won't say anymore so that I stay within the UA.
post #11 of 56
I don't have a problem with the first one, either. An ultrasound seems like it would be a good idea to not only access about how far along in pregnancy the woman is, but so that it's more realistic when she consents to the abortion. I actually thought that was done, anyway, as the women I can think of who have underwent one all had ultrasounds during at least one visit beforehand.

The second one doesn't make any sense to me.
post #12 of 56
My issue with the first is (again not looking at the law or how its described) the in depth description of the limbs, heart, organs etc, during the US. I think many of us remember US in which the tech takes measurements might point out some features (limbs, heart, etc.) It seems like this description process could be done in a very clinical process or if its written vaguely, it could be taken very overboard by an individual techinician or physician again pressing their beliefs (and in a position of power) onto an patient looking for and requesting a medical procedure.
post #13 of 56
Aren't most abortions are performed very early on? It does seem odd that they would be able to share so much detail about the fetus unless the pregnancy had progressed into the 2nd trimester.
post #14 of 56
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drummer's Wife View Post
Aren't most abortions are performed very early on? It does seem odd that they would be able to share so much detail about the fetus unless the pregnancy had progressed into the 2nd trimester.
You can measure a heartbeat as early as six weeks. Imagine "Your baby's heart is beating at 120 bpm, nice and strong and healthy. Your baby's arms are x mm long and her little fingers are growing."

If you are in for an abortion, what is the point of full disclosure here, but no disclosure of any deformities?
post #15 of 56
As someone who had a first trimester natural miscarriage at home and saw the fetus, I can assure you that it was pretty detailed looking. I won't go into specifics here, but it perfectly lined up with the photos I'd seen on fetal development. It wasn't just some blob that is indistinguishable.
post #16 of 56
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drummer's Wife View Post
I don't have a problem with the first one, either. An ultrasound seems like it would be a good idea to not only access about how far along in pregnancy the woman is, but so that it's more realistic when she consents to the abortion. I actually thought that was done, anyway, as the women I can think of who have underwent one all had ultrasounds during at least one visit beforehand.

The second one doesn't make any sense to me.
No it's not done. An ultrasound is performed for viability, and location prior to an abortion, but the screen is not turned toward the patient and no information is given, unless the woman wants to know.
post #17 of 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by geekgolightly View Post
You can measure a heartbeat as early as six weeks. Imagine "Your baby's heart is beating at 120 bpm, nice and strong and healthy. Your baby's arms are x mm long and her little fingers are growing."

If you are in for an abortion, what is the point of full disclosure here, but no disclosure of any deformities?
The point is true informed consent. I can tell you that after I lost my baby to a natural miscarriage at home, my best friend who had had an abortion years ago was quite interested in the realities of what it looked like and asked me detailed questions. And yes the reality of it made quite an impact on her, even though over 15 years had passed.
post #18 of 56
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arduinna View Post
The point is true informed consent. I can tell you that after I lost my baby to a natural miscarriage at home, my best friend who had had an abortion years ago was quite interested in the realities of what it looked like and asked me detailed questions. And yes the reality of it made quite an impact on her, even though over 15 years had passed.
She always could have asked. They make it clear up front that you can ask any questions, as well as there is counseling done prior to an abortion. When I had one, I was young and very curious about at what stage of development the baby was, and asked very very detailed questions. I wanted to know everything, before I made up my mind.
post #19 of 56
Wow.
post #20 of 56
True informed consent...what is meant by this? Usually informed consent is encompasses the following information (this is just not for abortions, but any procedure - except in a medical emergency):

your condition
the procedure, a description, time involvement etc
the risks of the procedure, benefits
additional risks (like you will be sedated, require a driver, CTs etc)
alternatives to the procedure
Your consent - signature or LAR (typically)

I'm having a hard time understanding where a detailed description of the fetus plays into true informed consent, and I think that's why I'm having a hard time wrestling with the first law, because it may (again haven't seen the exact legal language) borderline on including nonclinical & personal beliefs into that description. I'll take Geek's earlier description example re: heartbeat:

Imagine "Your baby's heart is beating at 120 bpm, nice and strong and healthy. Such a beautiful lifeYour baby's arms are x mm long and her little fingers are growing wiggling, waving

Italics are little statements which may be allowed (again not sure per law) which could have powerful impacts given the power dynamics which occur between patients and physicians. I think unless its written very carefully (which I highly doubt) personal beliefs will begin to come into (again) the realm of healthcare.

Again I'll be waiting for the case which overturns this or gets taken to the federal courts to be challenged in terms of constitutionality
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