That decision allowed for the passage of a 2019 law in Alabama that bans abortion in almost all circumstances.
For other providers, however, the question of how exactly the law is applied remains open. What constitutes a threat to a mother’s life or a fatal fetal abnormality, the law makes two exceptions. Will abortion pills ordered online break the law? What about ectopic pregnancies?
Marshall’s office said it is yet to comment on possible legal guidance for some of the grayer areas. In the meantime, vendors are trying to figure it out for themselves.
“Due to the fact that Roe v. Since it was the law of the country for 50 years, it will take time for everyone to sort out the implications of the Dobbs ruling,” he said
MASA shares some guidance on maternal health in abortion situations, as well as other areas of reproductive care affected by the 2019 law.
According to the law, a medical emergency is a medical emergency if “a pregnancy should be terminated according to a doctor’s assessment in order to avoid a serious health risk for the pregnant woman”.
3The law further defined a serious health hazard as “a condition that could result in the death of the pregnant woman or in significant physical impairment of an important bodily function.”
According to the association, an emotional state or mental illness is only considered a serious health risk if a psychiatrist says that the woman can harm herself or the child as a result.
According to MASA, the law should not affect contraceptive use, in vitro fertilization, or dilation and curettage procedures.
Questions have been raised about the legality of certain abortion pills. After recent
But unlike the morning-after pill, which is considered a contraceptive, prescription abortion pills are legal to terminate pregnancies up to 10 weeks.
MASA stated that “doctors who prescribe or distribute drugs like RU-486 with intent to induce or cause an abortion risk criminal penalties related to the law.”
The sentence of up to 99 years in prison applies only to the doctor who performs the abortion, not the woman who receives it.
Ectopic pregnancies, in which the fertilized egg implants in a fallopian tube or ovary, are not specifically mentioned in the law. Ectopic pregnancies always result in pregnancy loss, but they can be dangerous, even fatal, for the pregnant woman.
“I don’t think there is much clarity at the moment. We haven’t looked at contraception or the morning-after pill. We really haven’t gotten to where life begins — I mean, I know what I believe,” Collins continued
“As we continue to seek to understand the implications of complying with the court ruling and federal and state laws, we remain committed to our members and the communities we serve.”
She said her clinic often brought in women with pregnancy complications because doctors were afraid of violating abortion laws or simply didn’t want the “hassle” of dealing with the issue. She found that many of her clinic’s patients had been denied care in a hospital before seeking help at the clinic.
“Now that this is going to be something they could literally lose their license for, it’s only going to get worse,” Marty said.
Marty said that in certain situations, like excessive bleeding when the fetus still has a heartbeat, doctors are unclear about whether or not to perform an abortion. Even with ectopic pregnancies, she said, things could become a waiting game for doctors to be sure an abortion won’t arrest them.
Collins said it remains to be seen whether the Legislature could reconsider the law to provide more clarity. She said she was open to it after seeing how the law is being applied.
“Now that Roe’s down I think it’s our responsibility to decide if we want to be here? And I think that’s where the communities come together and have conversations, and we make sure we’re going in a direction that the majority of Alabamaans want us to do.”