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NASPAG responds to Texas Heartbeat Act

The North American Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology (NASPAG) is the latest professional medical association to come out against Texas Senate Bill 8 (SB 8), also known at the Texas Heartbeat Act.

The bill, which went into effect Sept. 1, bans abortion after 6 weeks even in cases of rape, incest, fetal abnormalities, or conditions where the mother’s life is at risk.

NASPAG released its statement on Sept. 7, in which it applauded and endorsed the position of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the American College of Physicians (ACP), the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), and the American Psychiatric Association (APA). Those groups issued their statement last week.

In that statement, those groups stated, “Our organizations are firmly against any policies that limit the evidence-based practice of medicine, threaten the patient-physician relationship, and inhibit the delivery of safe, timely, and necessary comprehensive care, including reproductive health services and information.”

NASPAG said that SB 8 undermines the ability of pediatric and adolescent health care providers to align with NASPAG’s mission.

“The bill impacts critical reproductive health care, which undoubtedly will disproportionately impact those with the poorest resources and access to care,” NASPAG said in its statement. “This is one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the United States, making abortion illegal with no exception for rape, sexual abuse, incest, or fetal anomaly diagnosis.”

In its opposition, NASPAG reiterated ACOG’s statement on it.“Clinicians should be able to provide patient-centered, evidence-based care and counsel, and patients should be able to access the care and information they need without fear of retribution. Such legislative interference will ultimately discourage compassionate, skilled clinicians from practicing in the state of Texas, further compromising patient access to care.”