A federal judge ruled on Wednesday that starting July 1, South Dakota can enforce part of a stringent anti-abortion law which will require a doctor, before performing an abortion, to determine if a woman has been coerced into the abortion or if she is at risk of psychological disorders. The ruling was the result of an agreement between Planned Parenthood, who sued the state over the law, and the Attorney General. As part of the agreement, the language of the law has been changed so that doctors will no longer be required to ask about certain psychological risk factors.
Executive Director of NARAL Pro-Choice South Dakota, Alisha Sedor, told the Argus Leader, “Like any patient, a woman considering abortion should receive full and unbiased information from her doctor about her medical options. However, this legislation imposes unnecessary government intrusion into private decisions and the doctor-patient relationship. We are disappointed to see that South Dakota legislators continue to insert themselves between a woman and her doctor.”
Planned Parenthood still has challenges pending to stop other parts of the anti-abortion law from going into effect. Under the portions of the law that a judge has yet to rule on, a woman will be required to wait 72 hours from the time of the initial appointment and the time of the abortion. She will also be required to consult with a pregnancy help center during the 72 hour waiting period.
Argus Leader 6/27/12; AP 6/27/12; RH Reality Check 6/27/12