Arizona Omnibus Bill (SB 1318)

This law was last updated on Mar 21, 2017


SB 1318 would amend Arizona’s law banning insurance coverage for abortion (A.R.S. § 120-21) as well as Arizona’s informed consent laws (A.R.S. § 36-2153). It would also impose an admitting privileges requirement.

Insurance Coverage

Current law prohibits any qualified health insurance policy, contract or plan offered through any state health care exchange established in Arizona from providing coverage for abortions unless the coverage is offered as a separate optional rider for which an additional insurance premium is charged. This provision does not apply to abortions necessary to save the life of the woman having the abortion or to avert substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function of the woman having the abortion.

SB 1318 would remove the provision permitting the purchase and payment for a separate optional rider.

The bill as introduced contained no exception for rape or incest and current law does not provide such an exception. The House, however, amended SB 1318 to include an exception for rape or incest before passing it on February 19.

Informed Consent

The bill would also amend Arizona’s informed consent law to require a physician to inform a patient of the following: “It may be possible to reverse the effects of a medication abortion if the woman changes her mind, but that time is of the essence.” In addition, the doctor would tell the patient that “information on and assistance with reversing the effects of a medication abortion is available on the Department of Health’s website.” This provision was added as an amendment by Rep. Kelly Townsend.

As reported by Rewire:

While medication abortion “reversal” remains untried, unsubstantiated, and purely experimental, that hasn’t slowed anti-choice activists in their quest to have it accepted not only as legitimate medicine, but offered at hospitals and urgent care centers across the country. This Arizona amendment represents not only the first time that abortion “reversal” will be supported at a legislative level, but also adds a perception of legitimacy by having the protocol mentioned on a state health department website.

Admitting Privileges Requirement

The bill requires an abortion provider to have admitting privileges at a local hospital in order to obtain or renew his or her medical license.

As reported by Rewire:

Proponents of admitting privileges laws charge that the legislation is based on safety, arguing that abortion providers should have an explicit contract with a hospital just in case something goes awry during the procedure. This anti-choice argument is based onno medical evidence: According to medical professionals, abortion is one of the safest medical procedures in the United States. Admitting privileges laws, the rules of which are not applied to other kinds of outpatient surgical centers, are instead a political tool to decrease abortion access, abortion proponents charge.

 

STATUS

This bill passed the House on February 19, 2015, after being amended to include an exception for rape or incest. The bill passed the Senate on March 25, 2015 and was signed into law by Gov. Ducey on March 30.


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