Not a matter of health
This weekend, my letter to the editor on Pennsylvania’s ultrasound bill was published on Lancaster Online:
In their March 4 column, Republican lawmakers inaccurately state that “national standards of abortion providers and best medical practice require” the use of ultrasounds for women seeking first-trimester abortion care.
The National Abortion Federation is the professional association of abortion providers in North America, and we set the standards through our evidence-based clinical policy guidelines. We do not require an ultrasound for first-trimester abortion care because there is no evidence that doing so improves patient outcomes or safety. Abortion is already one of the safest medical procedures.
Although many of our members use ultrasound evaluation to confirm pregnancy in the first trimester, that does not mean that states should make it mandatory. That … should be a medical decision left to the clinician and the patient. The state has no place interfering in these decisions.
In response to the public outcry, the House has temporarily set the bill aside, but we urge Pennsylvania lawmakers to permanently reject this misguided bill.