November 28, 2012 — The Arizona Department of Health Services last week launched a website about the risks of abortion, as required under a controversial new law (HB 2036) that also bans abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy, the Arizona Daily Sun reports.
The provision in the law that bans abortion at 20 weeks after a woman's last menstrual period is currently being challenged in court.
The new website features a list of medical complications that can result from abortion, as well as a list of services available to women who give birth, such as adoption services and diaper banks.
The site also includes illustrations of a fetus at two-week intervals of development, according to the Sun. State Rep. Kimberly Yee (R), who sponsored the legislation, said the drawings are in color and give more details than an ultrasound would.
The legislation states that women seeking abortion care must be given an opportunity to review the information, although it does not specifically mandate that they read it or view the illustrations, the Sun reports. Women may also obtain a printed copy of the materials.
Will Humble, state health director, said the site does not contain claims linking abortion to increased breast cancer risk or mental health problems (Fischer, Arizona Daily Sun, 11/26).
Repro Health Watch — an exciting new edition of the Women’s Health Policy Report — compiles and distributes media coverage of proposed and enacted state laws and ballot initiatives affecting women's access to comprehensive reproductive health care, as well as litigation in response to those provisions.