Abortion Health Reproductive Rights

Ohio Senate Introduces Bill Banning Telemedicine Abortion

On January 21st, the Ohio Senate introduced a bill, State Senate Bill 260, which would ban telemedicine abortions, following the lead of 18 states that currently ban this abortion procedure.

Telemedicine abortion occurs when there is not a clinician on staff when a patient visits a health center, and the patient would have a video conference with a clinician from another location. This clinician would be able to answer any questions and address any concerns a patient may have, while also being able to prescribe mifepristone and misoprostol, the two pills that are utilized within medicinal abortions. Despite this potential ban, telemedicine abortion is a completely safe procedure. Executive Director of NARAL ProChoice Ohio, Kellie Copeland, responded to the bill with “if you want to eliminate abortion access, if you want to stigmatize the procedure and try to threaten people with false information, I guess this would be a great reason to do that.”

This bill is the latest of numerous written by anti-abortion legislators that are trying to regulate abortion within the state of Ohio. At the end of 2019, the Ohio Senate passed legislation that requires abortion providers to tell their patients about “abortion reversal,” which would tell patients how to reverse their abortion if they change their mind, and implies that individuals who have an abortion come to regret it, while in reality over 95% of women who have had abortions felt that it was the right decision for them.

The bill is currently referred to the Health, Human Services, and Medicaid Committee in the Ohio State Senate.

Sources: Ohio State Senate 1/21/20; Guttmacher Institute 1/1/20; Rewire News 1/28/20; Rewire News 7/23/19; WOSU Public Media 1/22/20; Rewire News 1/15/20, Think Progress 1/13/15.