December 12, 2012 — Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin on Tuesday filed suit against a state law that requires physicians to complete a series of steps before prescribing medication abortion drugs, the Fond du Lac Reporter reports.
The law requires physicians and patients to meet several requirements before a medication abortion, including the completion of three office visits and multiple steps to verify that the woman is seeking the abortion voluntarily. According to the lawsuit, physicians who fail to follow the requirements can be subjected to criminal charges, civil penalties or disciplinary action.
The suit argues that the law does not clearly spell out what physicians must do to comply with the requirements and should be struck down.
Effects on Services
PPWI stopped providing medication abortions when the law took effect last April, but it continues to offer surgical abortions.
Douglas Laube -- past president of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists -- said that the lack of access to medication abortion has forced some women to wait until their pregnancies have progressed to the point that they can receive surgical abortions. For women with certain physical conditions, surgery can be more risky than the medication method (Hall, Fond du Lac Reporter, 12/11).
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.