Abortion

Bob Daemmrich/Texas Tribune

Texas senators voted Friday to send a bill banning the most common second-trimester abortion procedure and changing how health care facilities handle fetal remains to Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk. 

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Texas lawmakers are close to passing yet another abortion bill, roughly a year after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the state's last major abortion legislation.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

Abortions brought on by medications used to be almost completely inaccessible to women in Texas because of state abortion regulations. But in the year since the Food and Drug Administration changed the label for a widely used abortion pill last year, medication-induced abortions have been increasing in Texas.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

This summer, it will be a year since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a strict abortion law in Texas. Half of the state’s abortion providers closed after the 2013 law, known as House Bill 2, went into effect.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

Texas lawmakers are still referencing a highly edited undercover video from 2015 purporting to show Planned Parenthood officials selling fetal tissue.

Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

State Rep. Tony Tinderholt, R-Arlington, has been placed under the protection of the Texas Department of Public Safety after receiving death threats following his filing of a bill to criminalize abortion in Texas.

Callie Richmond for The Texas Tribune

A federal judge has extended his injunction against the Texas fetal burial rule. Judge Sam Sparks of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas ruled Friday that he wants to hold a trial to determine whether the rule requiring health care providers to cremate or bury fetal remains is constitutional. 

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

Abortion providers are hoping to stop a new rule that would require health care facilities to cremate or bury fetal remains from miscarriages and abortions, regardless of the gestation time or a woman’s wishes.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

The State of Texas is moving forward with a rule requiring abortion providers and hospitals to bury or cremate fetal remains from miscarriages and abortions. Groups are already gearing up to possibly sue the state over this rule, but the state could have a tough time defending it.

Johannes Jander/Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

Houston Democrat Rep. Jessica Farrar is calling on the State Auditor’s Office to review a $1.6 million state grant awarded to a group she says funnels money to an unlicensed medical provider with an anti-abortion agenda.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr./KUT News

From Texas Standard:

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) will hear testimony on a new rule that could affect abortion providers and those seeking such services. The new state rules would require abortion clinics to bury or cremate any fetal tissue from a miscarriage or abortion – even at the earliest stages of pregnancy. HHSC proposed the change four days after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Texas' abortion restrictions passed in 2013.

This hearing is the last chance for the public to give comments on the proposed regulations. More than 80 people signed up to testify at the hearings, including Trisha Trigilio, attorney for the ACLU of Texas. She says the requirements would single out abortion clinics for disposal that wouldn’t apply to any other medical procedures.

 


Callie Richmond / Texas Tribune

Health care providers, funeral operators and women's rights activists on Thursday are expected to tell Texas health officials that a rule requiring the cremation or burial of fetal remains will do little to improve public health and could be burdensome to women who miscarry and those seeking abortions.  

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

This Friday is the last day state health officials are taking public comment on an updated informational booklet they put together. It’s given to abortion providers, who are then required to give it to women seeking the procedure. Abortion rights advocates have long criticized the booklet because it contains medically inaccurate information.

Bob Daemmrich / Texas Tribune

In a new effort to regulate abortion providers, Texas health officials are proposing rules that would require abortion providers to cremate or bury fetal remains.

The new rules, proposed by the Health and Human Services Commission, would no longer allow abortion providers to dispose of fetal remains in sanitary landfills, instead allowing only cremation or interment of all remains — regardless of the period of gestation. Abortion providers currently use third-party special waste disposal services.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

The Texas Women’s Health Program has been a little rocky for the past few years. Ever since the state kicked out providers like Planned Parenthood, the program has been struggling to provide reproductive health care to all the low-income women it’s supposed to serve. But state health officials have been working on improving the program. And after getting some feedback from around the state, state health officials say they are launching some big changes this Friday.


Beth Cortez-Neavel/Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

Texas politicians were quick to send out tweets and press releases reacting to the Supreme Court's decision Monday, ruling 5-3 that a 2013 Texas law restricting abortion procedures placed an “undue burden” on people who seek care. The social media flurry broke down predictably along party lines. 


Beth Cortez-Neavel/Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that part of a 2013 Texas law restricting abortion procedures is "unconstitutional."

House Bill 2 required doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles. Each clinic also had to meet the standards of hospital surgical facilities. The law also banned abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and the abortion pill misoprostol.

The law garnered national attention during former Sen. Wendy Davis’s 11-hour filibuster in June 2013. The ensuing court case, Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, asked whether these new admitting privileges and ambulatory surgical center requirements on abortion providers within the state posed an “undue burden” on women.

 


Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

It’s been six months since a law went into effect that changes the rules for judicial bypasses – that's when a judge allows a minor to have an abortion without getting consent or notifying an adult. These bypasses are mostly sought by young women who fear abuse or can’t locate a parent or guardian. Advocates say this legal tool is vital to the young women who use it. But, since a law passed last year, it’s been harder than ever to get them.


Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

Last year a series of secretly taped and heavily edited videos were released showing Planned Parenthood officials appearing to discuss the sale of fetal tissue harvested from abortions. Those videos have since been discredited, but that hasn't stopped Republican leaders in the Texas Legislature from calling a series of hearings to review the state's rules for the use of fetal tissue. 


Miguel Guitierrez Jr./KUT

It’s only been about three weeks since the Federal Drug Administration changed the label for the country’s most widely used abortion drug, mifepristone. In Texas, advocates expected this would be a big deal, because Texas law mandates physicians administer the drug exactly like it says on the label—even though those methods weren’t common medical practice.


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