Texas Ultrasound Law to Go into Effect

The 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals denied the Center for Reproductive Right’s request for a rehearing concerning a TX ultrasound law, which will now go into effect immediately. In January, a three judge panel of the Fifth US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled to uphold a Texas law requiring that doctors describe ultrasounds in detail and play the sound of the fetal heartbeat, if a heartbeat is present, to women seeking abortions. In doing so, the Fifth Circuit overturned Federal District Court Judge Sam Sparks’ August preliminary injunction blocking enforcement of the law.

The case was filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights on behalf of Texas medical providers challenging Texas’ new abortion ultrasound law. The Center for Reproductive Rights claims that the law violates patients’ and doctors’ First Amendment Rights by requiring “physicians to violate basic standards of medical ethics by compelling them to disregard the wishes of patients who do not want to receive this information.”

Center for Reproductive Rights President and CEO Nancy Northup stated, “Women’s fundamental reproductive rights, and the First Amendment rights of their doctors, are now being violated on a daily basis because of this extreme and intrusive law, and it is disappointing that the full court has declined to consider their case.”

National Partnership for Women and Families 2/13/12; Feminist Daily Newswire 1/12/12

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