FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 28, 2012
Delegate David J. Toscano
SENATE PASSES BILL MANDATING UNNECESSARY ULTRASOUND
HB462 Tells Virginia’s Doctors How To Practice Medicine
Richmond – The Senate today passed HB462, a bill to mandate women undergo a medically unnecessary procedure prior to receiving an abortion. Presented as an “informed consent” measure, the legislation intrudes upon the physician-patient relationship. The bill passed the Senate on a 21 to 19 vote.
“This version of the ultrasound bill has unmasked its true purpose,” said Delegate David Toscano (D-Charlottesville). “It is neither about women’s health nor safety nor determining the age of a fetus. It is about forcing women to undergo – and doctors to administer – a costly and medically unnecessary procedure that will provide little useful information and serves simply to intimidate women, their families, and their doctors.”
The bill sponsored in the House by Del. Kathy Byron (R-Bedford), originally required women to undergo a physically intrusive transvaginal ultrasound but was amended after national public outcry to allow women to “opt out”. Senator Janet Howell (D-Fairfax) was successful in exempting women who are victims of rape or incest from undergoing the intrusive procedure. It now goes back to the House for final approval.