Utah Committee Passes Bill to Allow Women to See Ultrasound Before Abortion
by Steven Ertelt
January 29, 2010
Salt Lake City, UT (LifeNews.com) — When ultrasound first became popular the question was, would abortions be done if women and society had a window to the womb? A Utah state legislative panels that window open because it passed a bill allowing women a chance to see an ultrasound of their unborn child before an abortion.
When used in pregnancy centers, ultrasounds are credited with helping more than 80 percent of women to reconsider a decision to have an abortion.
Legislators hope many women will be convinced to find positive alternatives by seeing an ultrasound at an abortion center.
HB 200 reworks some of the current informed consent language currently on the books in Utah and makes it so abortion centers must allow women a chance to see an ultrasound before the abortion is done.
The bill also requires abortion facilities to provide a detailed description of the unborn child to the mother considering abortion.
The legislation, sponsored by Republican state Rep. Carl Wimmer, also requires the state Department of Health to produce both printed and video information about the ultrasound viewing that abortion businesses must give women 24 hours in advance of the abortion informing them of their rights to view one.
Wimmer, according to the Deseret News, told the panel the idea behind the bill is to give women more information so they will make better choices.
"This doesn’t force anything on women; it makes no mandate of any kind," Wimmer said. "In four or five places, it uses the phrase ‘if she chooses.’ This is actually a ‘choice’ bill that allows a woman to have more information if she wants it. That’s it."
Wimmer said he would sponsor the bill last year and, at that time, said abortion centers don’t want to lose business by persuading women not to have an abortion.
"They’re in the abortion market to make money. The more ultrasounds they show, the fewer abortions they’re going to be able to do," he told the newspaper.
Melissa Bird, executive director of Planned Parenthood Action Council in Utah, claimed women can already see the ultrasound if they wish.
The Utah Department of Health indicates 3,932 abortions were done in Utah in 2007.
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