The Reproductive Health Act will ensure abortion is treated like all other health care, with regulations that reflect current medical standards
LANSING, Mich. – Today, State Rep. Laurie Pohutsky introduced legislation to ensure continued access to safe, legal abortion in Michigan. State Sen. Sarah Anthony is expected to follow suit in the Senate soon. The Reproductive Health Act (RHA) will repeal Michigan’s medically-unnecessary abortion restrictions and ensure abortion is treated like all other health care.
“Michiganders turned out in record numbers last year to pass Proposal 3 and protect the right to reproductive freedom in our state constitution, but our work is not over,” said Paula Thornton Greear, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan. “Michigan law still contains a number of dangerous and unnecessary regulations that explicitly target patients and abortion providers and continue to obstruct access to essential care. We are grateful to the elected champions sponsoring the Reproductive Health Act because we need to finish the job voters started last November. When we repeal these dangerous restrictions still littering Michigan’s law books, patients will have greater access to the care guaranteed to them under the Michigan state constitution.”
The Reproductive Health Act will repeal laws that require a 24-hour delay before patients can access abortion, remove discriminatory barriers to funding for abortion providers, repeal laws limiting insurance coverage of abortion, remove medically-unnecessary TRAP (targeted regulation of abortion providers) laws that are designed to limit access to procedural abortion, and ensure abortion is treated like all other health care, with regulations that reflect current medical standards.
“Despite voters’ overwhelming support of Proposal 3, accessing abortion remains incredibly difficult in Michigan. Every day I hear from patients who are struggling to overcome the political barriers designed to block them from care. Many patients are unaware of Michigan's 24-hour delay law and are forced to reschedule their appointments, often requiring an overnight stay and additional time off work. Patients in the Upper Peninsula are forced to drive 7 hours or more to access procedural abortion. State bans on insurance coverage for abortion leave people scrambling to come up with the funds to pay out of pocket. And because of all this, the patients we are seeing now tend to be further along in their pregnancies and are more likely to be experiencing medical complications than before,” said Dr. Sarah Wallett, Chief Medical Operating Officer at Planned Parenthood of Michigan. “Every day we see patients who are anxious and scared, unsure whether they will be able to overcome these barriers and make their own decisions about their families and health care. It’s devastating. We need the Reproductive Health Act to ensure all people can access abortion with dignity, free from political interference.”
As states across the country continue to criminalize abortion care, the Reproductive Health Act is critical to ensuring both Michiganders and patients traveling from out of state can get the care they need and deserve.
“Last year, Michiganders made it clear: our bodies, our lives, and our futures are ours to decide. In the face of other states moving to undermine our rights, Michigan lawmakers have recognized that it is long past time to repeal harmful, medically-unnecessary restrictions on abortion — and ensure, like voters intended when they approved Proposal 3 and enshrined new protections for reproductive freedom under the Michigan state constitution, that more people can access the care they need without government interference. We applaud health care champions across Michigan for introducing this critical legislation and look forward to the historic Reproductive Health Act becoming law,” said Alexis McGill Johnson, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Action Fund.
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan (PPAM) is the advocacy arm of Planned Parenthood of Michigan. PPAM works in conjunction with Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Planned Parenthood Action Fund at the national level, as well as our health center/education affiliate Planned Parenthood of Michigan, supporters, and patients at the state level to ensure access to reproductive health for all Michiganders.
Planned Parenthood offers affordable reproductive health care for all people through medical services, education and advocacy and is the nation’s leading sexual and reproductive health care advocate and provider. Planned Parenthood of Michigan operates health centers across the state, providing medical services and sexuality education for nearly 60,000 Michiganders each year.