HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Concordia University School of Law

Thursday, April 6, 2006

New Approach to Abortion Issue By Democrats

According to the Hill.Com, Senate democrats are pursuing a new strategy with regard to the abortion issue - to try to reduce the need for abortions through greater access to contraceptives.  The article states,

The Prevention First Act is sponsored by Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (Nev.), one of few congressional Democrats considered anti-abortion. The bill, which Reid introduced at the start of the Congress, has the support of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), presumptive front-runner in the 2008 presidential primary and 21 other Democrats.


The bill would prohibit group health plans from excluding contraceptive drugs, devices and outpatient services if they cover the cost of other prescription drugs and outpatient services. It would also require the secretary of health and human services to disseminate information on emergency contraception to healthcare providers and require hospitals receiving federal money to provide emergency contraception to victims of sexual assault.


The bill would also mandate that federally funded programs provide information about contraceptives that is medically accurate and includes data on health benefits and failure rates.


When asked whether he would be able to get a vote on his bill soon, Reid said: “I hope so. I’ll do what I can.”


He added that bringing the issue to the floor is “on my mind.”


A Democratic leadership aide said that, while only a slim majority of voters favor abortion rights, an overwhelming majority support promoting the use of contraceptives and comprehensive sex education.

Thanks to Americablog for the cite.[bm]

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