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Health & Science

Telemedicine Doctors Face Abortion Restriction Under Proposed Legislation

a photo of a doctor talking to a patient via computer
AGENTURFOTOGRAFIN
/
SHUTTERSTOCK.COM
Under the proposed bill, doctors would not be able to prescribe abortion-inducing drugs to patients they treat via computer.

The percentage of medication induced abortions has been increasing each year. In 2018, about 30% of all abortions tracked by the Ohio Department of Health were medication induced. 

Now, a bill to prevent doctors from using telemedicine to provide abortion-inducing drugs has been introduced. But  backers of the bill don't know of any cases where that is happening in Ohio right now.

Ohio Right to Life’s Stephanie Ranade Krider says the bill would prevent a doctor from prescribing drugs to cause a non-surgical abortion via a computer-assisted consultation with a patient. But Ranade Krider admits none of these have been done in Ohio.

"To my knowledge, there aren't. There are already some pretty significant restrictions on how or when the abortion pill can be used.”

Kellie Copeland of NARAL ProChoice Ohio says she thinks sponsors have a different reason for the bill.

"If you want to eliminate abortion access, if you want to stigmatize the procedure and try to threaten people with false information, I guess this would be a great reason to do that.”

Ranade Krider says Iowa passed a similar bill in 2013 when abortion providers were talking about using it to serve more rural parts of the state.