Telemedicine Bill Introduced This Morning

This morning, a telemedicine bill (SB 5175) was introduced into the Senate. A similar bill was introduced last year that would have allowed payment for medical services done remotely. This is generally seen as an advance in health care because it makes it easier for people who live in rural areas to access health care.  While SB 5175 does not normally fall under our four core issues (life, marriage, parental rights, and religious freedom), one little detail caught our attention: webcam abortions.

Reasons for concern with webcam abortions:

  • Webcam abortions would give doctors the ability to prescribe more chemical abortions with fewer qualified staff
  • Washington State does not require parental notification for abortion, so potentially, young girls could be prescribed a chemical abortion without the parent’s knowledge
  • There is the possibility that young girls could be hundreds of miles away from the medical professional who prescribed the chemical abortion

This is simply dangerous.

Although suggestions were made to remove sections which included webcam abortions in last year’s bill, no changes were made during the session. Thankfully, the bill died in the Senate. However, the section concerning webcam abortions seem to still be the same as last year’s bill.

While last year’s bill was stopped in the Senate, it has come back this session and will be on our “bills to watch list.” We will continue to keep you updated on this bill and other in our Legislative Center.

1 reply
  1. Sue Lani Madsen
    Sue Lani Madsen says:

    While I am committed to working against abortion as an ethically indefensible choice to end a human life, I am also committed to maintaining access to health care in our rural communities. We need access to telehealth services. Lets try and find a way to perfect this bill to do the least harm.
    1) delete abortion services specifically from those included in telehealth
    2) add a requirement for an ultrasound to be transmitted electronically to the remote physician so he/she is fully informed (and so is the patient)
    3) require parental notification for minors being treated by telehealth on grounds that when the physician doesn’t have benefit of a personal contact to judge the situation

    Use the distance between patient and physician as a justification for requiring more information than the state has allowed for in typical PP settings. Its a foot in the doir, and lets our rural citizens get the care we need. And more information WILL bring more support to our movement.

    Reply

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