Yesterday, the Texas state Senate passed a bill (SB 16) that would require women to have a sonogram within 24 hours prior to having an abortion. The woman would then be required to listen to her doctor’s description of the fetus, which would include information about which organs have developed; however, she could choose not to view the sonogram or listen to the fetal heartbeat. Following the sonogram, women, except those living over 100 miles from an abortion provider, must then undergo a 24 hour waiting period.
The Texas Medical Associate stated in a letter to the Chairman Robert Duncan (R-TX) of the Senate Committee on State Affairs, “TMA is concerned about the dangerous precedent SB 16, and related legislation, would set for health care in Texas – a precedent that would lay the foundation for future lawmakers to establish the details of the interaction between physicians and patients, and allow non-physicians to mandate what tests, procedures, or medicines must be provided to patients and in what timeframe.”
The bill makes exceptions in the cases of rape and incest. It will now go to the state House for a vote.