Democratic Senator Jon Erpenbach and Representative Chris Taylor unveiled a package of bills that advocate for women’s access to health care today.
Taylor says these bills are designed to support women in making their own reproductive healthcare decisions.
“This important package of bills, shows what reproductive healthcare should look like,” Taylor says. “This is what we want. This is our vision.”
The three bills under the Respect Women Act are designed to ensure health care providers give medically accurate information, block the state from passing laws that prohibit medically necessary abortions and deter harassment of people seeking abortions.
There are also additional provisions which would allow for coverage of abortions on qualified health plans in the state and eliminate the requirements for voluntary and informed consent before performing an abortion.
Under current law, the state requires patients receive counseling and an ultrasound from a doctor before they can go through with an abortion.
Dr. Amanda Schmehil-Micklos, a practicing OBGYN in Madison, says laws like this force physicians to offer medical advice that might not be in the best interest of their patients.
“When politicians use this agenda, and not science and not evidence to dictate reproductive healthcare, it really does have an impact on patients, and real families, and real women,” Schmehil-Micklos says.
Democrats introduced similar legislation to the state Assembly in 2016, but it ultimately didn’t pass.
Kai Brito reported this story.