Friday, April 30, 2010

Oklahoma HB 2656 and HB 2780

CNN posted a story today By Mary Alice Carr

This story is a little disturbing as written because she wrote the story with a different twist than every other story I've read on the issue so far.  What we have here is a perfect description of what happens when our Governments gets too big and too powerful.  This story as written is designed to SCARE you into thinking that Doctors can now and will lie to prevent abortions.

The situation is much more complicated and no where near as bad as it sounds.  What you need to be aware of is the HB 2780 also mentioned has been dubbed the Sonogram bill, making it a requirement for all mothers to be given a Sonogram. The bill would require the procedure be done and the mother be given the "option" to view the results.  That makes the threat of HB 2656 very small.  If they had passed HB 2656 without HB 2780 there would be a huge gap in Women's rights but that doesn't seem to be the case here in Oklahoma.

Pro-Choice people are trying to spin it that way to create support for the Pro-Choice movement in Oklahoma which is VERY SMALL.  See HB 2656 is really about tort reform in preventing law suits.  HB 2780 ensures that women will in fact have access to the information on the health of their fetus.  Pro-Choice people are pissed about that as well because now a woman cannot get an abortion without first being given the Sonogram.  See it's win win or a lose lose depending on your perspective.

Like so many other issues today they are never as clear as they seem until you look at more than one source of information.



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  1. So let's get this straight, if you don't intend to get an abortion but would like to know if you're going to have to arrange for help with your special needs child, or for that matter the doctor knows you're baby is going to die within a week after being born, he can just lie and say everything's fine with your baby. And you can't say boo. HB 2780 is only remedial if you assume that every woman who has a fetus with birth defects plans to get an abortion. Now women bearing a birth-defect child will just have to wait until after delivery to get the shock. Well, as the text of the bill says, it's all about protecting the doctors, not about any concern for the child or the family.

    Honestly, how many such slimy doctors are there in Oklahoma that made this bill necessary?

  2. So you think it is OK for a Dr to lie to a woman and her partner about a birth defect or fatal condition because the woman can request a copy of her records and try to read through the medical gibberish to figure out if something is wrong.

    So if you have cancer your Dr. should just give you access to your records and see if you figure it out? What if a woman decides to have a home birth and her baby dies due to a birth defect she was never told about? Is the Dr liable then?

    I think you need to deepen your own understanding because you really don't get it! Good Luck

  3. I've read the bill a few times and as near as I can make out no where in the bill does it say it is okay for a doctor lie to a patient. Please point out where you are all getting that.

  4. It also sounds as though you are assuming all potential "birth defects" would be detectable by viewing a sonogram. That's just wrong. A sonogram in fact tells very little about the health of the fetus unless there is a severe physical abnormality.

  5. That's exactly right, the bill does not give permission to "Lie".

  6. People are NOT READING the bill! If someone has access to it online/link please post here. The bill allows full medical access! You can't have it both ways! you can't say I want the dr. to disclose all of the info to me when I'm pregnant, but I dont want to see the ultrasound?! Hello! The ultrasound is part of the medical information. The bill DOES NOT ALLOW DOCTORS TO WITHOLD INFO. Some of these commenters need to stop lying and twisting the truth.

  7. Search for 2780 or 2656 at following link

  8. To answer the individuals asking what language in HB 2656 authorizes "lying" -- it doesn't use that word. It uses "wrongful act or omission." Wrongful act = lying or obfuscating. Omission = avoiding telling the truth.

  9. Directly from HB 2656:

    C. In a wrongful life action or a wrongful birth action, no damages may be recovered for any condition that existed at the time of a child’s birth if the claim is that the defendant’s act or omission contributed to the mother’s not having obtained an abortion.

    So yes, if a Dr. omits information that might have otherwise caused a mother to choose to have an abortion, the Dr. is now free from blame. This allows Dr's to place their personal beliefs in front of the patient's best interests with no recourse.

    HB 2780 doesn't provide "the option to view sonogram results" as the blog post states. It's much more involved than that. Here's the actual bill text.

    B. In order for the woman to make an informed decision, at least one (1) hour prior to a woman having any part of an abortion performed or induced, and prior to the administration of any anesthesia or medication in preparation for the abortion on the woman, the physician who is to perform or induce the abortion, or the certified technician working in conjunction with the physician, shall:

    1. Perform an obstetric ultrasound on the pregnant woman, using either a vaginal transducer or an abdominal transducer, whichever would display the embryo or fetus more clearly;

    2. Provide a simultaneous explanation of what the ultrasound is depicting;

    3. Display the ultrasound images so that the pregnant woman may view them;

    4. Provide a medical description of the ultrasound images, which shall include the dimensions of the embryo or fetus, the presence of cardiac activity, if present and viewable, and the presence of external members and internal organs, if present and viewable; and

    5. Obtain a written certification from the woman, prior to the abortion, that the requirements of this subsection have been complied with; and

    6. Retain a copy of the written certification prescribed by paragraph 5 of this subsection. The certification shall be placed in the medical file of the woman and shall be kept by the abortion provider for a period of not less than seven (7) years. If the woman is a minor, then the certification shall be placed in the medical file of the minor and kept for at least seven (7) years or for five (5) years after the minor reaches the age of majority, whichever is greater.

    So not only does it force the woman to sign off that she has seen the ultrasound, but it also puts a mandatory record of her abortion in her medical record.

  10. Remember, the atrocity of this bill has nothing to do with pro-life or pro-choice. It all comes down to the fact that doctors in OK may now misinform their patient if they think the patient may disagree with their personal ideology; and also be protected from litigation based on that dishonesty. Withholding information or misleading a patient about their health and the health of their unborn child is simply unethical, and should never be condoned, much less protected.

  11. I am a doctor and have read the bill. Although it does not explicitly make it okay for a doctor to lie to a patient, it ELIMINATES ANY PENALTY FOR DOING SO if the patient would have chosen an abortion if she had had all the relevant information. So it basically says "you can lie and you won't get in trouble" .
    For example: Sally is 38 and worried she is at high risk for Trisomy 18 (Edward's syndrome) which will result is death of the baby by one year of age after much suffering. She knows she does not want to carry a pregnancy like that to term and believes it is morally wrong to deliver a baby that will most certainly suffer and die within a year. She also is not financially stable enough to care for such a sick infant. She has an ultrasound (looks normal as it often does). Then she has an amnio. Her doctor says everything is fine and Sally happily continues her pregnancy expecting a normal healthy baby. Except when she delivers, the baby has Edward's Syndrome. This bill prevents Sally from filing a lawsuit against her doctor. The baby's medical expenses are hers alone. Sally's suffering and her baby's suffering will not be eased with any compensation. She may file a complaint with the medical board, but that's about it. Her doctor gets off without even a slap on the wrist and Sally watches her baby suffer, die, and drain her emotionally and financially.

    As for the U/S law - abnormalities are not always detectable by ultrasound. That's why doctors perform amniocenteses. And good luck trying to interpret that yourself without a medical degree. If the law was really made to allow women to have all information available to them, why not just make it an OPTION for them to view it and hear the description? Do we force cancer patients to see the extent of their disease on a CT scan before we cut it out? Why is it necessary to insert a probe into a woman's vagina before she has an abortion? Do people really think the decision has been made so flippantly that telling her the fetus has a heartbeat is going to change her mind? Get real, Oklahoma, and at least be HONEST about your motivations for these laws.

  12. The jist is...I'd NEVER see a doctor in this state with this law in place. How could you possibly know who to trust? It will cause malpractice insurance issues too. What company in their right mind would insure doctors in a state with laws like this. There will be lawsuits, regardless of what the law says, and the courts will have to sort it out.

    It's MY body. It's ultimately a woman's decision, not even the spouses because the fetus is not living and growing in their body. When a man can figure out how to carry a baby then he can decide what to do with his own pregnancy and no other man or woman's.

  13. Did you really just compare a fetus to a cancerous tumor? This is where the issue really comes down to - let's be honest - Anyone who sees a fetus as equivalent to a tumor will always read the legislation differently than someone who sees a fetus as a human being.

  14. I love how anytime a bill like this comes out, everyone assumes that the fault lies with a "slimy doctor". 95% of the time these bills are coming from politicians (= lawyers). Doctors are then the ones who have to suffer the consequences of losing patients trust. Most doctors truly care about the patient. Abortion is a hard thing for everyone but sometimes it's the right choice. Forcing a woman to have an ultrasound or read literature about normal fetal developement (as is done in some states) does not make this decision any easier and is cruel to women.
    No one ever seems to care about a woman's feelings. If the government wants to ban abortion then they also need to provide the funds for all care for these children - birth defects or not.

  15. Interesting article, added his blog to Favorites

  16. Thank heavens I was able to teach him to stop tearing at my nipples bythe time he was four. in case her overachieving daughter tries a rescue.
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    Thank heavens I was able to teach him to stop tearing at my nipples bythe time he was four. in case her overachieving daughter tries a rescue.

  17. The larger picture: the Oklahoma government has no right to interfere with a woman's reproductive choices. Oklahoma has no right to demand that a vaginal or abdominal ultrasound be performed. This is essentially battery. It's interference by big government. Give us freedom! Is this America?

    1. You probably should not speak about vaginal or abdominal ultrasounds being too invasive when you do not understand the steps that happen to ensure the successful murder of a child. In order for a doctor to perform an abortion they utilize a vaginal ultrasound to make sure all the baby's parts have been completely removed to avoid infection. An ultrasound will be used regardless of whether you think its battery, the only difference is one usage may prevent a murder the other usage ensures the murder was as successful as possible.

  18. i assume this means that this sonogram is taken very early in the pregnancy. if that is always the case then it makes perfect sense. There really is not much of a doctor patient relationship if the woman is intent on an abortion and makes this clear to the doctor. he is fulfilling his duties. show them the sonogram and point out the different parts. that is all he is required to do. he is providing a service - thats all. that should be made clear to every patient, thus giving them the opportunity to change the nature of the relationship. once the pregnancy goes beyond the stage where most abortions are done, that is when the defects really become obvious anyway and any doctor will tell you this. unless of course it is painfully obvious and i seriously doubt any doctor in his right mind is going to lie about that.

  19. i think the sonogram bill put many doctors in a very bad position. knowing that the woman only has to do this 1 hour before , does not really leave the doctor much time to establish any kind of a relationship with the "patient". given that, i understand this bill completely. he reall is not a doctor in this scenario. he is providing a required service - to give her the opportunity to view a sonogram. that is all the law says he has to do. if i were a doctor i would not want to be put in that position either.
    from that perspective i understand completely

  20. yes the sonogram bill would give you the access to know if something is wrong with your baby because you get to view a sonogram but how many people can look at one of those pictures and seriously tell if something is wrong. Not everyone can do it!! That is what your doctor is for. To look at your sonogram and tell you when something is wrong. Now letting them get out of a law suit for telling you nothing is wrong when there is something wrong because they think you may abort is ridiculious.

  21. after carefully reading and re-reading the bill that supposedly allows the doctor to lie, i have found that it simply does not do that. All the liberal headlines screaming that are simply wrong.