California on brink of allowing non-physicians to perform abortions


Thursday, August 29, 2013


Wed Aug 28, 2013 14:28 EST

SACRAMENTO, CA, August 28, 2013 ( – California is on the brink of allowing non-physicians to perform abortions in some circumstances.


The State Senate passed AB154 by a 25-11 vote on Monday. The bill would authorize midwives, nurse practitioners, and physicians’ assistants to perform first-trimester suction aspiration abortions.

Lou Correa of Anaheim was the only Democrat to vote against the bill, which was introduced by Assemblywoman Toni Atkins, D-San Diego.

If the state Assembly passes the amended bill and Governor Jerry Brown signs it into law, California will become the fifth state to allow – or at least not ban – the practice, joining Montana, New York, Oregon, and Vermont.

“The growing shortage of abortion providers creates a significant barrier for women,” according to State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara.Toni Atkins introduced the bill.

The Guttmacher Institute reports that in 2008 nearly one-third of all the nation's abortion providers -- more than 500 -- worked in California.

Live Action founder Lila Rose said the bill would allow Planned Parenthood “to kill unborn children at lower costs, as they would not have to pay a doctor.”

“In the wake of Kermit Gosnell, in whose abortion facility a woman died from an untrained staff member's mistake, it's unthinkable for lawmakers in California to push a law like this,” Rose said.

study conducted by Tracy Weitz, director of UC-San Francisco’s Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health, found that abortions performed by non-physicians had twice the rate of complications as those performed by doctors. However, Dr. Weitz called the difference “clinically equivalent.

The push to enable midwives and other non-physcicians to perform abortions is a growing trend in the West and elsewhere across the globe. At the Women Deliver conference earliler this year in Kuala Lumpur, Malysia, representatives of the population control lobby discussed using midwives as a vehicle for increasing the number of worldwide abortions

“Abortion backers say they care about the health and safety of women but their action show they just want more abortions, even if that means lower medical standards,” Rose said.

Readers may contact California assembly members of the committee, by visiting