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Pritzker signs reproductive and gender-affirming health care bill into law

Friday, Jan 13, 2023 - Posted by Rich Miller

* AP

Gov. JB Pritzker signed a measure Friday shielding reproductive and gender-affirming health care patients and providers from legal action originating across state lines.

Illinois lawmakers on Tuesday approved a measure protecting Illinois’ access to abortion from out-of-state meddling, making the state the latest to pursue such protections since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last June.

The bill will shield reproductive and gender-affirming health care patients and providers from legal action originating across state lines in a post-Roe world where some states are moving swiftly to restrict such procedures.

* From the governor’s press release…

• Shields individuals in Illinois from foreign subpoenas, summons, or extraditions related to lawful reproductive or gender affirming care in Illinois. Requires courts in Illinois to apply Illinois law in cases involving reproductive health care.
• Requires the Department of Public Health to partner with organizations to provide grants for abortion training.
• Clarifies that Advanced Practice Registered Nurses and Physicians Assistants can perform abortions consistent with their training and within their scope of practice.
• Requires local units of government including schools, municipalities, and counties that offer health insurance plans to provide coverage for contraceptives, and if they offer pregnancy-related benefits, abortion.
• Requires abortifacients (i.e., medications administered to terminate a pregnancy), gender-affirming health care medications, and PEP/PrEP medication (i.e., HIV treatment) to be covered by insurers at no-cost to the consumer.
• Prevents insurers from charging higher out-of-pocket costs for certain insurance plans when patients are forced to seek out-of-network provider care due to an in-network provider raising moral objections under the Health Care Right of Conscience Act.
• Expands access to reproductive health care by permitting birth centers in Illinois to provide full spectrum reproductive health care and sexual health care, instead of only childbirth-related needs of pregnant persons and their newborns.
• Allows patients to receive hormonal birth control over the counter from a pharmacist pursuant to a standing order from the Illinois Department of Public Health.
• Establishes a counterclaim for individuals who have a judgement entered against them in another state for reproductive health care that is legal in Illinois.
• Clarifies that no person is subject to civil liability for receiving an abortion under the Wrongful Death Act, clarifies that no hospital personnel shall report an abortion to law enforcement agencies, and clarifies that the statute of limitations under the Reproductive Health Act is 2 years.
• Amends the Parentage Act:

    o Allows intended parents or parents to dispose of any cryopreserved fertilized ovum to be governed by the intended parent’s or parent’s most recent informed consent or under a marital settlement agreement.
    o Allows for the establishment of a parent-child relationship in the event of gestational surrogacy wherein the intended parent dies; and
    o Allows an out-of-state physician to certify the genetic make-up of embryos.

• Adds “assisted reproduction” to the definition of reproductive health care in the Reproductive Health Act. “Assisted Reproduction” means a method of achieving a pregnancy through the handling of human oocytes, sperm, zygotes, or embryos for the purpose of establishing a pregnancy.
• Prevents the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) from taking disciplinary action against any health care professional licensed under the Division of Professional Regulation Acts governed by IDFPR based solely upon the license of the professional being disciplined by any state for providing or participating in any health care that is legal in Illinois, regardless of whether it is legal in the other state.
• Allows IDFPR to establish expedited, temporary licenses for out-of-state healthcare professionals seeking to provide healthcare in Illinois. Allows these licensees to offer telehealth.
• Amends the Wrongful Death Act to prohibit someone from asserting a claim as a result of a lawful abortion.
• Adds additional protections for healthcare providers and facilities from being punished for providing abortions and related services.

* From sponsoring Rep. Kelly Cassidy’s speech today

When the Supreme Court overturned Roe, I learned an important lesson. Doesn’t matter how long you’ve anticipated a punch in the gut, it still hurts. We all came together on that day too, many of us were together. And as we hugged and cried and consoled each other, I thought about the people who dedicate their time and energy to attacking those least able to defend themselves. Whether that’s an acting bans on reproductive care, attacking the trans community by taking away health care or simply trying to legislate them out of existence, and I resolved to punch those bullies back even harder. I referred to them as bullies in debate on the House floor. They didn’t like it. But that’s exactly what they are. They’re punching down. Well, they got a problem. Folks, this is the first of those punches but certainly not the last. […]

Our mission is clear. If you want to come after people seeking care or their providers, if your mission is to torment trans kids and their families, you’re gonna have to get through all of us first.

* Press release from Rep. Adam Niemerg (R-Dietrich)…

“As I have previously stated, there does not seem to be any restrictions on abortion that the majority party would ever support,” Niemerg said. “This legislation goes far beyond merely allowing abortion to be legal in Illinois. The leaders in the House and the Senate are actively promoting abortion and even taking the extreme position to provide legal immunity to abortion providers. The message we are sending abortion providers is it does not matter what kind of sanctions other states have placed on you and if a woman in your care dies, you can’t be sued. This is not pro-woman. Allowing unqualified medical personnel to perform abortions and protecting abortion doctors from lawsuits does nothing to protect women. Anyone who cares about women’s health should be opposed to this monstrous legislation.”

       

11 Comments
  1. - Big Dipper - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 1:51 pm:

    ==this monstrous legislation==

    Dial down the melodrama already.


  2. - vern - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 1:56 pm:

    === there does not seem to be any restrictions on abortion that the majority party would ever support ===

    Hopefully Niemerg spends some time in swing districts next election, going door to door saying this to voters. He won’t be happy with the results, but it could be educational.


  3. - Pundent - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:02 pm:

    =As I have previously stated, there does not seem to be any restrictions on abortion that the majority party would ever support=

    Are these the so called “live birth” abortions that rarely if ever happen? Whether it’s assault weapons or a women’s right to choose I keep hearing from the GOP that there’s some reasoned middle ground position that’s being ignored. But they seem unwilling to demonstrate exactly what that is.


  4. - Jerry - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:02 pm:

    Let me guess Niemberg is a “pro-life!” xtian and voted No on the assault weapons ban. Jesus sure had a lot of exceptions to “do onto others”.


  5. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:05 pm:

    ===I keep hearing from the GOP that there’s some reasoned middle ground position that’s being ignored. But they seem unwilling to demonstrate exactly what that is.===

    The GOP wants voters to do nuance, but there’s no nuance to being absolute in pro-life, and in refusing any restrictions on assault weapons.

    Like you’re pointing out, they, themselves can’t reconcile how silly they are in these. They, the GOP, can’t even find… nuances


  6. - Chicagonk - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:11 pm:

    Mostly good, but I do find it interesting that the law requires coverage for hormone therapy and PREP to be provided without any cost sharing (no deductibles or co-pays). Insulin has a $100 a month out of pocket cap in Illinois. It just seems arbitrary having the state decide which drugs should be provided free to Illinois residents.


  7. - Cool Papa Bell - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:23 pm:

    The U.S. has the highest maternal mortality rate among developed countries.

    In 2020, the maternal mortality rate for non-Hispanic Black women was 55.3 deaths per 100,000 live births, 2.9 times the rate for non-Hispanic White women.

    =Anyone who cares about women’s health should be opposed to this monstrous legislation.=

    Rep. Niemerg I hope that you and rest of the GOP will be pro-woman and address the problems I raise above by working to expand and improve health care in the state - after all you are pro woman right?


  8. - vern - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:25 pm:

    === keep hearing from the GOP that there’s some reasoned middle ground position ===

    Some Republican legislative candidates tried this half-heartedly in the midterms. When asked about abortion they’d say they want parental notification restored and a late-term ban. The problem is that they could never find the courage to start the sentence with “I support a woman’s right to choose in most circumstances.” They skipped the part where they tell voters they’re prochoice. So the “nuance” never got communicated in a way voters would accept.


  9. - Pundent - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:43 pm:

    =The problem is that they could never find the courage to start the sentence with “I support a woman’s right to choose in most circumstances.”=

    Or put another way, “we’ve gone too far in protecting women’s rights.”


  10. - JS Mill - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:43 pm:

    @Chicagonk makes a very interesting point regarding medication and costs.


  11. - Pundent - Friday, Jan 13, 23 @ 2:59 pm:

    Chicagonk is showing where the GOP could actually help themselves. There’s a bigger picture argument to be made here.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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