Vote to pass a bill that requires physicians to provide certain information to women preparing to undergo nonemergency abortion procedures beginning July 1, 2011.
Requires the physician, or qualified person, performing an abortion to inform the patient, orally and in person, that she has the right to receive the following (Sec. 1):
An active ultrasound image of the fetus; and
An opportunity to listen to the fetus' heartbeat, if audible.
Requires that the active ultrasound image and "auscultation" of the heartbeat be made available to the patient at least 24 hours in advance of the abortion procedure, except in the case of a medical emergency (Sec. 1).
Requires that the quality of the ultrasound image and "auscultation" of the heartbeat be consistent with standard medical practice in the community and, in the case of the image, contain the dimensions of the fetus and accurately portray the presence of external members and internal organs, if visible (Sec. 1).
Requires the physician, or qualified person, performing the abortion to provide information about fetal pain to the patient, in cases where the fetus has reached 20 weeks gestation or more including, but not limited, to the following (Sec. 1):
An explanation of the anatomical links presents in a fetus of 20 weeks gestation or more that allow it to feel pain;
A description of the actual steps in the abortion procedure to be performed or induced, and identification of the steps at which the fetus is capable of feeling pain;
An explanation of maternal anesthesia, including the fact that such anesthesia typically does little to alleviate fetal pain; and
A description of available forms of anesthesia that may minimize or alleviate pain to the fetus.
Exempts the following types of abortions from the provisions of this act (Sec. 1.):
Abortions performed to save the life or preserve the health of a fetus;
Abortions performed to remove a deceased fetus;
Abortions performed to correct an ectopic pregnancy.
Defines "medical emergency" as a condition in which a pregnant woman, on the basis of a physician's good faith judgment (Sec. 1):
Requires a termination of her pregnancy in order to prevent her death; or
Is at serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function.
Defines "qualified person" as an agent or employee of a physician who is a licensed psychologist, clinical social worker, professional counselor, registered nurse or physician (Sec. 1).