McCluer North StarGazer

Bill for Pills

Emily Schoen, Editor-in-Chief

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As republicans in congress move toward the defunding of Planned Parenthood, a California senator is pushing a bill to require student health centers on public university and community college campuses to provide non-surgical abortion services.

Senator Connie Leyva, D-Chino, is expected to introduce Senate Bill 320, which would require student health centers to provide access to abortion medications to students by using state funds. This bill does not address the performance of surgical abortion procedures.

For an abortion using medication instead of invasive tactics, women can typically receive a two-pill dosage of mifepristone and misoprostol from a doctor up to 10 weeks after the last menstrual cycle. According to Planned Parenthood, the effect of the medicine is similar to that of an early miscarriage.

Leyva said the Grand Old Party (GOP) plan to replace the Affordable Care Act, put into place under former President Obama, and reduce federal funding for reproductive care. This bill would heighten the need for additional services on college campuses.

The new health care plan would reduce services for women services for women to avert pregnancies, especially in areas without healthcare clinics or doctors who serve low-income patients, according to a review written by the Nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

The American Health Care Act would bar Planned Parenthood from receiving federal funds for providing any type of care to patients that have Medicaid insurance. In addition, the bill blocks the use of tax credits on insurance policies that cover abortion services, creating further hurdles for women seeking abortions. Existing law already prevents Planned Parenthood from spending federal dollars on abortion services.

Whether the law forbids tax funding for abortions or not, women who are wanting to terminate their pregnancies will find a way to do so. Most likely, the women will put themselves in dangerous situations with what are referred to as “back alley,” “backstreet” or “back-yard” abortions. These procedures involve using a wire coat hanger, are often done by complete strangers and jeopardize the health and safety of the woman. While providing the opportunity for college women to terminate their pregnancy in a safe way, this bill would make it harder for women who do not attend college or do not have a certain amount of money to get the proper treatment they need. If a college woman feels the need to have an abortion, they should go to a clinic that provides treatment for all women. Colleges are places for learning materials necessary for a pursuing a career. They should not have to provide services that clinics and some hospitals can provide and take the opportunity to have an abortion away from others who may be in an urgent situation where an abortion is absolutely necessary.

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