California Bill to Protect Physicians Who Mail Abortion Pills

Doctors in California who send abortion pills to people in other states will be protected from prosecution under a new bill announced Friday in the state legislature.

The bill would prevent California from extraditing doctors who are charged in another state for providing abortion drugs. It will also save doctors from having to pay fines. And it would allow California doctors to sue anyone who tries to stop them from having abortions.

The bill would only protect doctors based in California. If a doctor left California to perform an abortion on someone in another state, that doctor would not be protected. It also won’t protect patients in other states who receive the drug.

State Senator Nancy Skinner, a Berkeley Democrat and sponsor of the bill, said her intention is that California residents who travel to other states or live there temporarily, such as college students, can still have access to drugs that are legal. in USA. their home state. But she acknowledged that the bill would also apply to California doctors who treat patients living in other states.

“This is a necessary medical assistance,” Skinner said. “Our healthcare professionals must be protected when treating their patients, no matter where they are geographically.”

Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut, Maryland, and Vermont have proposed or passed similar laws, according to Skinner’s office. Connecticut law, among other things, blocks out-of-state criminal calls related to reproductive health services that are legal in Connecticut and also blocks extradition—unless the person has fled the state requesting them.

“Obviously if a provider is doing telemedicine services to someone, even if they ask where they are, they kind of have to take it on faith,” said Connecticut Rep. Matt Blumenthal, Democrat and co-chair of the Caucus General Assembly on Reproductive Rights. “We don’t want to turn health care providers into the police for our patients. And we don’t want to force them to investigate every time they use telemedicine.”

Other states have tried to block the distribution of the abortion pill known as mifepristone. Attorneys general in 20 states, mostly with Republican governors, have warned some of the country’s largest drug companies that they could face legal consequences if they distribute the pill in their states.

Most abortions in Idaho are illegal, including medical abortions. Blaine Conzatti, president of the Idaho Family Policy Center, an anti-abortion rights group, said California has an obligation to extradite doctors who violate Idaho laws.

“The audacity of such a proposal is astounding,” Conzatti said of Skinner’s bill. “This flaunts traditional interstate relationships and will completely overturn our federal system.”

Skinner’s bill goes beyond abortion. It will also protect doctors from mailing contraceptives and drugs to transgender people.

California already has laws that prevent courts from enforcing out-of-state judgments against abortion providers and volunteers. This law was intended to protect doctors who perform abortions on people who come to California from out of state. Anti-abortion campaigners say laws like this are illegal because they violate a clause in the US Constitution that states that states must “totally trust and trust” the laws of other states.

Federal courts have recognized an exception to this clause, including laws in one state that violate the “public order” of another state. The Skinner Act states that under California public policy, physicians should not be charged for providing abortion drugs.

“We’re very careful,” Skinner said.

Abortion pills have been legal in the US for over two decades and can be used up to the 10th week of pregnancy. It is currently the most common abortion method in the US. A federal judge in Texas is considering whether to withdraw or suspend the drug’s approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This decision will apply to all states, not just those where abortion is illegal. .

Skinner’s bill is one of 17 pieces of legislation Democrats have introduced in California this year to protect abortion rights, including proposals to improve access to contraceptives and protect patient privacy.

Content Source

California Press News – Latest News:
Los Angeles Local News || Bay Area Local News || California News || Lifestyle News || National news || Travel News || Health News

Related Articles

Back to top button