Maryland Women’s Late-Term Pregnancy Health Act (SB 511)
This law was last updated on Feb 27, 2015
SB 511 would prohibit performing or inducing an abortion unless the physician first makes a determination of the probable gestational age of the fetus, except in case of a medical emergency.
The bill would ban abortions if the probable gestational age of the fetus is determined to be 20 weeks or more, except in the case of medical emergency.
The bill defines “medical emergency” to mean “a condition in which an abortion is necessary to preserve the life of a pregnant woman whose life is endangered by a physical order, physical illness, or physical injury, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy or when continuation of the pregnancy will create a serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function of the pregnant woman.”
The bill includes legislative findings based on junk science that a fetus can feel pain at 20 weeks as well as junk science that abortions become relatively less safe after 20 weeks.
Physician Reporting Requirement
The bill states that a physician who performs an abortion in the case of medical emergency must submit a written report to the medical facility in which the abortion was performed indicating the reason for the medical emergency. The medical facility must, in turn, submit a written report to the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.
If a physician performs an abortion in the case of medical emergency in a location other than a medical facility, the physician must submit a written report to the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene indicating the reason for the medical emergency.
A violation of this provision might result in a $100,000 fine or up to ten years in prison, or both. The bill also provides civil remedies.
Companion bill to HB 961.