In California, A Measure To Expand Access to Safe Abortion Care Fails
By Vicki Saporta (National Abortion Federation) at RH Reality Check:
In late February, California Sen. Christine Kehoe (D-San Diego) introduced a bill in the state Senate that would allow nurse practitioners (NPs), physician assistants (PAs), and nurse midwives (CNMs) to provide first trimester aspiration abortion care. Although the bill had support from leading medical groups in the state, and was even co-sponsored by the heads of both legislative houses, Sen. Kehoe withdrew the bill Friday because it lacked enough votes to pass a key legislative committee.
NPs, CNMs, and PAs — collectively referred to as advanced practice clinicians (APCs) — play an increasingly important role in the delivery of a range of health care services in the United States, and are competent providers of prenatal and postpartum care; family planning services; and gynecological care. In some parts of California—especially rural areas — women may see an APC for the rest of their health care, but are forced to travel outside their communities in order to obtain the abortion care they need. This legislation would have allowed women to obtain safe, early abortion care in their communities, from their current health care providers.
Abortion is well within the scope of practice of APCs and it’s unfortunate that some California Senators missed this point.
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