Senate Judiciary Committee Applauded for Acting to Protect the Health and Safety of Michigan Women

Legislation Will License Abortion Clinics that Remain Unlicensed, Uninspected

Thursday, July 26, 2012

(Lansing)—Michigan Catholic Conference is applauding members of the Senate Judiciary Committee who voted today to support legislation that will better protect the health and safety of Michigan women who choose the path of abortion. House Bill 5711, which passed the committee by a vote of 3-1, seeks to ensure that unlicensed abortion businesses in Michigan become licensed and thereby inspected by state health officials. The legislation includes additional components that will place the health and safety of women above the business interests of the abortion industry.

“There’s no reason why businesses that perform major surgical operations should remain unlicensed and uninspected by health officials. It’s time Michigan puts the health and safety of women above financial or ideological interests,” said Michigan Catholic Conference Policy Advocate Rebecca Mastee, who testified before today’s hearing. “Michigan Catholic Conference now looks forward to the bill’s consideration by the full Senate.”

HB 5711 calls for an abortion clinic to be licensed as a freestanding outpatient surgical facility (FOSF) if that facility advertises outpatient abortion services and performs six or more abortions per month. According to a House Fiscal Agency legislative analysis of House Bill 5711, only four of 32 abortion facilities in Michigan are licensed as FOSF clinics. Most are rarely or never inspected due to the fact that so few clinics are licensed, the director of Bureau of Health Systems testified before a Senate Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Subcommittee back in March.

Additional components of the legislation include prohibiting coerced abortions; requiring medical malpractice insurance for those physicians who have been found liable in two or more civil cases against them or have been found non-compliant regarding health and safety requirements; prohibiting the distribution of the abortion pill by a doctor in another state via a “web cam”; and providing for the humane disposition of fetal remains from an abortion.

Michigan Catholic Conference is the official public policy voice of the Catholic Church in this state.

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