Since the original ruling more than 40 years ago, Americans consistently have opposed overturning Roe v. Wade. As a result, the strategy that abortion opponents turn to is restricting and eliminating safe and legal abortion access via technicality and needless regulation. And in several states, they’re finding success. One of the most popular tactics is called “admitted privileges.” It requires physicians who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a local hospital. In the last year, admitting privilege requirements have passed in several states, with two more (Oklahoma and Louisiana) poised to move in the next several weeks.
We all want to protect patient safety. But these bills don’t make patients safe. Providers already have plans in place in case of an emergency to ensure patient safety. These bills are intended to put up another obstacle before women who make the personal decision to have a safe and legal abortion, the result of which is fewer providers and less access.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Medical Association opposed these laws:
“There is no medical basis to require abortion providers to have local hospital admitting privileges.”
“Emergency room physicians, hospital-based physicians, and on-call specialists already provide prompt and effective treatment to all patients with urgent medical needs, including women with abortion-related complications… Unless there is a substantial public health justification, legislators should not interfere with patient care, medical decisions, and the patient-physician relationship.”