Sunday, January 13, 2008

Abortion in Maine, Part Three

The thirty-fifth anniversary of Roe v. Wade is about 1 1/2 weeks away, so I've been writing for the last couple days about the state of abortion in Maine. In my first post, I posted the latest statistics about abortion in Maine. And my previous post on the subject dealt with one smart man's perspective regarding the state of abortion in America (I picked out his observations concerning Maine) if Roe v. Wade were overturned by the current U.S. Supreme Court. Today, I will lay out in a matter-of-fact manner abortion law in Maine as it is today.

According to the Guttmacher Institute, the following are characteristics of Maine abortion law as of January 1, 2008:

- An induced abortion must be performed by a licensed physician.
- An abortion does not need to be performed in a hospital in any circumstance.
- A second physician does not need to participate in any circumstance.
- Abortion is prohibited except in cases of life or health endangerment if the fetus is at viability
(viability is generally categorized as twenty-four weeks).
- "Partial-Birth" abortion is not banned.
- Public funding does not fund all or most medically necessary abortions; instead, public funding
is limited to cases involving life endangerment, rape, or incest.
- Private insurance coverage is not limited to only cases involving life endangerment.
- Both individual and institutional health care providers may refuse to participate in the
provision of an abortion.
- Mandatory counseling regarding abortion's effect on breast cancer, fetal pain, serious
psychological effects, or abortion alternatives and support services is not required.
- There is not a mandatory waiting period after counseling.
- Parental consent or notice is not required in cases involving minors.

If you want to see how Maine abortion laws stack up against the laws of the other forty-nine states, click here.

- John C.L. Morgan

No comments: