State Representatives Josh Cockroft and Sean Roberts praised Gov. MaryFallin for signing into law yesterday a significant pro-life bill.
House Bill 2381 would make it a felony for a physician to prescribe a pill known as RU-486 or milfepristone for the inducement of an abortion without being physically present.
“Regardless of your position on the abortion issue, this bill is about the safety of our citizens,” said Cockroft, R-Tecumseh, and primary author of the bill. “To allow a physician to prescribe this pill without conducting a proper examination of the patient to determine whether the drug will create a harmful reaction is unacceptable, which is why the Legislature attempted to deal with this issue last year.”
Cockroft said the legislation is needed because a loophole in a measure passed last session allows physicians to give an exam and prescribe the pill over the Internet. That measure required physicians to provide an examination and set up a follow-up appointment before prescribing RU-486 for the inducement of an abortion.
State Rep. Sean Roberts, who co-authored the bill, said a proper examination is needed to check for ectopic pregnancies and other contraindications that would make the abortion pill dangerous and potentially lead to serious complications such as hypotension, cardiac problems or hemorrhaging.
“This is not like taking an aspirin for a headache,” said Roberts. “RU-486 creates a major bio-physical reaction in the human body that necessitates a pre-examination of the patient and the physical presence of a physician during the procedure to treat any harmful effects. I’m grateful for the partnership of Rep. Cockroft and Gov. Fallin on this pro-life issue.”
Felonies are punishable by a fine of $1,000 or up to two years incarceration in the Department of Corrections. The legislation would also make physicians liable for damages.
The measure will be effective November 1, 2012.