State House Approves Changes To Abortion Reporting

May 9, 2013

Credit Ben Ramsey / Flickr Creative Commons

Abortion providers in Oklahoma would be required to answer dozens of new questions on a state questionnaire under a bill given final approval in the House despite concerns the bill paves the way for costly litigation against the state.

The bill by State Rep. Sean Roberts (R-Hominy) adds several questions to the Individual Abortion Form that abortion providers in Oklahoma are required to fill out and submit to the Department of Health.

Providers already are required to ask a woman dozens of questions about her age, race, marital status, previous pregnancies, and relationship problems.

The bill would add questions about whether an ultrasound was conducted and where the abortion provider had hospital privileges.

House Bill 2015 also requires that a doctor performing the procedure report whether or not they complied with several abortion-related laws, such as the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

“It is becoming clear that it is critical to track abortions,” Roberts says. “The latest example of an alleged criminal abortionist is a Pennsylvania doctor who is accused of severing the spinal cords of newborns and performing abortions beyond the scope of the 24-week limit allowed by Pennsylvania law.”

That law includes a provision requiring that if a doctor deems a later-term abortion is necessary to save the mother’s life, that the procedure be done in the manner best conducive to potentially saving the baby’s life after labor is induced.

State Rep. Kay Floyd (D-Oklahoma City) raised concern about a section that allows an individual taxpayer to sue a provider.