Texas Pro-life Bill Seeks More Accountability from Abortion Providers

baby-wombTighter regulations on abortion providers and ending abortion at 20 weeks are some of the highlights of Senate Bill 5 (SB5) in the Texas legislature. Last week, pro-abortion Senator Wendy Davis filibustered SB5 for 13 hours, which contributed to the bill not being passed before the midnight deadline. Because there are stringent restrictions on filibustering, such as not using the restroom during the filibuster, Senator Davis resorted to using a catheter she had inserted prior to her floor speech. This action shows the desperation that exists among pro-abortion advocates to protect their right to kill innocent babies in the womb. As a result, Governor Rick Perry has reconvened the legislature for a special session to take up SB 5 again.

Here are the Facts: Senate Bill 5 will raise standards of care for women who are pregnant and protect the lives of the preborn who feel pain, by banning abortions at 20 weeks. SB 5 also requires the same health and safety regulations as an ambulatory surgical center, requires a doctor providing abortions to secure admitting privileges at a nearby hospital within 30 miles and requires a doctor to personally administer abortion-inducing drugs to the patient.

While SB 5  is not perfect legislation because it still allows for abortions up to 20 weeks and has an exception for rape and incest, it still represents the most restrictive piece of legislation offered by any state.

If you would like to have your voice heard on SB 5, please join us for an on-line tweetfest on Tuesday at 12PM EST. #Stand4Life https://www.facebook.com/events/608040389220122/?notif_t=plan_user_invited

Medical Students for Life to Hold First Northeast

Regional Conference

On Saturday April 27th, 2013, Medical Students for Life of America will be hosting a Northeast Regional Conference at Dartmouth College Geisel School of Medicine. Our featured speaker will be Dr. Byron Calhoun; he will address prenatal diagnosis and perinatal hospice. Dr. Calhoun will be joined by physicians such as Dr. Nicole N. Varasteh, OB/GYN and others from the Northeast discussing topics such as right of conscience, counseling patients considering abortion and more. We will also be joined by special guest Anne Burge, Executive Director of the Pregnancy Center of the Upper Valley to discuss medical connections with Pregnancy Resource Centers.

When: Saturday April 27th, 2013
Time: 8am-1pm
Where: Dartmouth College Geisel School of Medicine
Chilcott Auditorium, Vail Building
1 Medical Center Dr
Lebanon, NH 03756

The conference is free and open to any medical students, faculty or professionals throughout the Northeast. However, you must register by emailing us at jrussell@studentsforlife.org. Lunch will be provided free and donations will be accepted to help cover the cost of the conference.

Abortion Pill Ruling Mandates Over the Counter Sales to Minors

planbA federal judge ruled Friday that the morning-after pill known as Plan B must be made available over the counter for women of any age.

The decision comes after lengthy legal battles over who should have access to the pill and at what age. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had initially decided to allow the emergency pill to be available for young teens. But HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius overruled the FDA in late 2011, and the agency limited availability without a prescription to women 17 and older.

As for today’s ruling, the Justice Department did not say whether it would appeal.

“This ruling turns the doctor-patient relationship into a cashier-patient relationship placing women’s health in the hands of corporations instead of caring physicians. We are calling on the Justice Department to appeal this ruling,” said Jon Russell, National Coordinator for Medical Students for Life.


Alliance Defending Freedom Litigation Counsel Catherine Glenn Foster “Parents and trained physicians are the ones responsible for the care of underage patients. The court’s decision wrongly allows pharmacies to distribute a life-ending drug over the counter to young girls without their parents’ or doctor’s knowledge or consent. Numerous studies have shown that these abortion-inducing drugs do not reduce the teen pregnancy rate and may even increase STDs, and the long-term effect these drugs will have on the health of young girls is still unknown.”

Doctor’s from across the country are speaking out on the issue….

“Contraception management is an opportunity for physicians to counsel patients in regard to their at-risk behavior and test for sexually transmitted diseases.  A concern for the teen is immature decision making which puts their compliance and proper use of this medication in question.  While no one argues the need to decrease teen pregnancy rates, making it easier to get emergency contraception means teens are less likely to receive counsel, guidance and screening while engaging in high risk behaviors,” said Dr. Anita Showalter, DO OB-GYN, Yakima, WA.

The decision Friday by U.S. District Judge Edward Korman ordered the FDA to make the pill, commonly referred to as the morning after pill, available for all ages.

Dr. John Bruckalski, OB/GYN, Fairfax, VA, commented, “When it comes to reproductive technology, politics trumps science as the legal system, and/or the medical community rushes to make the latest and greatest pill, plastic or device in the name of preventing unwanted pregnancies, knowingly waiting for the side effects to show themselves.  Real people suffer in this rush to market.  Historically, it has been that way with oral contraceptives, IVF protocols, and abortion procedures.  The studies so far on the ‘morning after pills’ that are given ‘preventively’ by a healthcare provider have not decreased the pregnancy or abortion rates, and may have increased the rate of developing chlamydia.

“With partner violence at epidemic levels, the possibility for abuse of this powerful steroid in an at-risk population of our younger women is profound. This is another example of how medicine is moving away from the doctor-patient interaction because of political expediency.  Abusive partner relationships that will affect our children throughout their life, increasing pelvic pain and infertility via sexually transmitted diseases will increase because of this legal maneuver.

“Where is our profession heading when we place powerful hormones ‘over the counter’ for girls and ban similar steroid hormones for our boys who play sports?  We have to be better than this.  Health is based on relationships found in community.”

The decision means that unless the FDA appeals and is granted a stay, by this time next month a teenager 16 or under could walk into a local pharmacy and buy the pill off the shelf.

“When a teenager is having sex, pregnancy is not the only risk. Another risk is sexually transmitted diseases.  And if a teenage girl is exposed to Genital human papillomavirus (also called HPV) through sex, they are at risk for developing cervical cancer later in life.

They are also at risk of the severe emotional distress of a breakup after having done something very intimate with another person.  It is also possible that the teenager is having sex because they are a victim of rape.  The only one of these risks that is addressed by any form of contraceptive pill is pregnancy.  Emergency contraception covers up very risky behavior.  Making it available to anyone may cause us to miss the opportunity for parents to step in and help protect these young girls from the other risks associated with sex. It is irresponsible not to care for the whole person.  Our young people deserve better than for us to help them hide risky behavior,” said Mary Catharine Maxian, MD Houston, TX.