Kentucky bill requiring ultrasounds for abortions clears senate

Updated: Jan. 7, 2017 at 5:48 PM CST
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KENTUCKY (WFIE) - In a rare Saturday legislative session, the Kentucky Senate passed a bill requiring ultrasounds for women considering abortions.

The bill requires women to listen to the fetal heartbeat. Lawmakers say there would be no exceptions for cases of rape.

The bill now heads to the desk of Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin.

House Republicans, also passed Senate Bill 5, the "20 Week Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act," which bans abortion after 20 weeks: the half way point of a pregnancy.

The "Ultrasound Informed Consent Act," HB 2, passed the House on Thursday and requires a doctor to provide women with an ultrasound prior to her consent to undergo an abortion procedure.

The act is intended to equip women of Kentucky with the pertinent medical information to make her consent to an abortion procedure fully informed.

"This week, common sense legislation to protect life and provide women with appropriate medical information has passed the Kentucky General Assembly," said Chairwoman of the House Health and Family Services Committee, Representative Addia Wuchner. "There is nothing more pro-woman than protecting the life of a child and assuring that all women are provided complete medical information when such a critical life-impacting decision is faced."

In addition to providing a woman with complete medical information before consenting to an abortion, the "Ultrasound Informed Consent Act," or HB 2, permits any woman to elect not to view the ultrasound or hear the unborn child's heartbeat.

Both bills passed in an overwhelmingly bipartisan manner, and will now be sent to the Governor Bevin for his signature.

They will both become law immediately upon his action.

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