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Texas Omnibus Abortion and Fetal Tissue Bill (HB 200)

This law was last updated on Oct 23, 2017


HB 200 would amend current law regarding certain prohibited abortions and the treatment and disposition of human fetal tissue.

Partial-Birth Abortion Ban

The bill would prohibit a physician or other person from knowingly performing a “partial-birth abortion,” unless it was necessary to save the life of the pregnant patient.

The bill defines “partial-birth abortion” to mean:

“the purpose of performing an overt act that the person knows will kill the partially delivered living fetus, deliberately and intentionally vaginally delivers a living fetus until:

  • for a head-first presentation, the entire fetal head is outside the body of the mother ; or
  • for a breech presentation, any part of the fetal trunk past the navel is outside the body of the mother; and

performs the overt act[…]other than completion of delivery, that kills the partially delivered living fetus.”

A person who violates this provision would be committing a state jail felony.

Civil Liability

The bill provides that the father of the fetus or a parent of the pregnant patient (if they are a minor) may bring civil action to obtain appropriate relief, including money and exemplary damages.

The pregnant patient may not be held liable for such an abortion.

Donation of Human Fetal Tissue

The bill would prohibit a person from donating human fetal tissue, placenta, or an umbilical cord except in certain circumstances.

The bill provides that an authorized facility may donate human fetal tissue only to an accredited university for use in research that has been approved by an institutional review board. Only an authorized facility may donate placenta or an umbilical cord.

The bill prohibits an authorized facility from donating human fetal tissue, placenta, or an umbilical cord that is obtained from an elective abortion.

The bill defines “authorized facility” to apply only to licensed hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, and birthing centers.

Informed Consent

The bill would require an authorized facility to obtain the written, voluntary, and informed consent of the patient from whose pregnancy the fetal tissue is obtained prior to making any fetal tissue donation.

Criminal Penalties

A person would be committing a Class C misdemeanor if the person offers a pregnant individual monetary or other consideration to

  • have an abortion for the purpose of donating fetal tissue;
  • or consenting to the donation of human fetal tissue.

A person would also be committing a Class C misdemeanor if the person knowingly or intentionally solicits or accepts tissue from a fetus gestated solely for research purposes.

A Class C misdemeanor is punishable by a fine of up to $10,000.

Reporting Requirements

A facility that donates human fetal tissue would be required to submit an annual report to the department that includes for each donation:

  • the specific type of fetal tissue donated; and
  • the recipient of the donation.

Prohibition on Purchase and Sale of Human Fetal Tissue

The bill would prohibit a person from knowingly offering to buy, offering to sell, acquiring, receiving, selling, or otherwise transferring any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration, unless the person is:

  • an employee or under contract with an accredited university; and
  • acquires, receives, or transfers such tissue for the purpose of fulfilling an authorized donation.

A person who commits this offense would be guilty of a state jail felony.

If passed, this law would take effect on September 1, 2017.

Related Legislation

Companion bill to SB 8, which passed and includes a D&E ban.


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