(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Roger Marshall, M.D. – an OBGYN who delivered more than 5,000 babies – offered an amendment to the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Landmark Advancements (FDASLA) Act to protect the unborn. Specifically, Senator Marshall’s amendment would require FDA-approved drugs – such as a chemical abortion drug – to be prescribed only after a patient has been diagnosed using a medical imaging device. Modeled after Ultrasound Informed Consent Act, the amendment ensures appropriate use and informed consent before receiving abortion drugs.
“As an OBGYN for 30 years, I delivered thousands of babies. But I never imagined I would be fighting harder in Congress than I did in the ER and delivery room to protect mothers and babies. Medical imaging are one of the most powerful tools to ensure pregnancy is occurring in the uterus – that there is not an ectopic pregnancy – and it’s powerful in humanizing the unborn. I would remind people that the so called abortion pills are approved for up to 70 days, and even in the best of hands – let alone telemedicine – guessing a gestational age can be off by 3-4 weeks and in some cases months. Medical imaging is the standard of care to diagnose the pregnancy. In fact, one study showed that up to 78% of abortion-minded mothers chose life after seeing an ultrasound of their child. The federal government does not have all the data on medication abortions that go wrong. As one of only three physicians on this Committee, this is the least you can do to protect the safety and wellbeing of women and unborn children.”
Senator Marshall’s Amendment failed during the committee vote.
The Ultrasound Informed Consent Act would require abortion providers to conduct an ultrasound before performing an abortion. Specifically, before a woman gives informed consent to any part of an abortion, the abortion provider must:
- perform an obstetric ultrasound on the pregnant woman;
- provide a simultaneous explanation of what the ultrasound is depicting;
- display the ultrasound images so the woman may view them;
- make audible the live heart auscultation and provide a verbal explanation of it; and
- provide a complete medical description of the images, including the dimensions of the embryo or fetus, cardiac activity if present and visible, and the presence of arms, legs, external members and internal organs if present and viewable, and provide a copy of the ultrasound image to the woman.
As a condition of receiving any Federal funds or assistance, an abortion provider shall perform and review an ultrasound before performing an abortion. Providers are subject to civil actions and penalties for violations. The bill’s ultrasound requirements do not apply in cases where a physical disorder, illness, or injury caused by the pregnancy endangers a woman’s life. A woman is also not required to view the ultrasound images; nor may she or the provider be penalized if she declines to do so.
This legislation is cosponsored by Senators Marsha Blackburn (TN), Mike Braun (IN), Bill Cassidy (LA), Ted Cruz (TX), Steve Daines (MT), Cindy Hyde-Smith (MS), Jim Inhofe (OK), Cynthia Lummis (WY), Mike Rounds (SD), Rick Scott (FL) and James Lankford (OK).