Phoenix, AZ — Over the weekend, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed into law the nation’s first ban on telemed webcam abortions. The bill also will require that women be given ultrasounds at least one hour before their abortions and that they be given an opportunity to see the image of their pre-born babies. The new law is expected to take effect 90 days after the legislative session ends on April 23, 2011.
“Telemedicine is meant to enhance an existing doctor-patient relationship. However, Planned Parenthood’s telemed abortion scheme actually makes sure that relationship never exists and dangerously cuts corners at the expense of women’s health. We are excited that Arizona has decided that women deserve protections from this abuse of technology and we congratulate those responsible for this new law’s passage,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman.
The groundbreaking new law also requires that a licensed physician administer the abortion pill. That could impact Planned Parenthood’s abortion business in Flagstaff, Prescott, and Yuma where abortion pills are currently distributed by nurse practitioners.
Telemed abortions were exposed nationally by Operation Rescue in March, 2010, after an investigation revealed that abortion pills, which have been responsible for at least 13 patient deaths, were being prescribed over a web connection. An abortionist would sit at a computer screen in one city and have a brief conversation with a patient at another clinic. The abortionist would then push a button on the screen and remotely activate a drawer that would pop open in front of the patient. She would take one set of abortion pills in the office then take the rest at home unsupervised. At no time would the patient actually be examined by a licensed physician or have access to one in the event of an emergency. The process violates FDA safety protocols on numerous points.
Webcam abortions, are currently in use only in Iowa, but last year, a Planned Parenthood spokesperson let slip the news that the national group’s five-year plan included the goal of expanding them into every Planned Parenthood clinic throughout the nation. That would have represented the largest expansion of abortion services since Roe v. Wade.
Pro-lifers jumped on this news, and as a result, Arizona was among several states, including Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, and others to introduce bills to stop the dangerous webcam abortion practice from expanding.