Running Head: STATE FUNDED ABORTION Abortion West Virginia Senate Bill 76 NURS 501: Health Policy xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxx Abstract Abortion is defined as the termination of a pregnancy that involves a human life whether intentional or unintentional. Any form of a living cell or group of cells that form life. Over the years the State of West Virginia has spent millions of tax dollars on voluntary abortion. This paper will discuss Senate bill no. 76, prohibiting state funding of abortion. The bill does not make it illegal to have an abortion but to make the individual responsible for payment.
Introduction of Problem/Issue and Related Bill Abortion has been a controversial issue for many years. An abortion is the death of an undeveloped embryo or fetus. The type of abortion to be discussed in this paper is an induced abortion. There are pro-life groups and pro-choice groups that voice their opinions on abortions. The pro-life group does not support abortion. This group generally does not care who pays for the abortion. The pro-choice group believes that one should have the right to make the decision on whether or not to have an abortion.
This group generally does not care who pays for the abortion as long as it is a right. There are on average 800 abortions per year in West Virginia. The majority of these abortions are determined elective. The current statics show that on average one in three women have had an abortion. The State of West Virginia pays an estimated $400,000 in 2006 for elective abortions (Ertelt, 2009). Abortion is legal in the State of West Virginia and is currently state funded. In the State of West Virginia, Senate Bill (SB) 76 was introduced by Senators Jeffrey V.
Kessler(D ) from district 2, Jesse O. Guills (R) from district 10, Frank Deem (R) from district 3, Clark S. Barnes (R) from district15, Joseph M. Minard (D) from district12, Jack Yost(D) from district 1 and William R. Laird IV (D) from district 11. SB 76 is a bill to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, by adding a new clause and not allowing the state to fund abortions except in the event of medical necessity and rape or incest. SB 76was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary and then to the Committee on Finance where it currently resides.
This bill was introduced on February, 11, 2009, and was to amend the Code of West Virginia 1931 (http://www. legis. state. wv. us). A copy of SB 76 is included as Appendix A. Background/Significance and Scope of the Problem Abortion has been discussed and argued for many years. There are groups that feel abortions should be illegal and not performed and then there are groups who think it should be an individual decision. Also there is controversy as to whether or not the fetus/embryo is a living human being or not at conception. There are Christian support groups that say a fetus/embryo is living upon conception.
The Christian community does not support abortion. The two groups that will be discussed here are pro-choice and pro life. The economical consideration that needs to be considered with SB 76 is the approximate $400,000 that could be saved by the state if funding was not available for abortions. Insurance payouts for complications related to abortions would be decreased because not as many abortions would be performed. Ethical considerations related to abortions continue to be argued. The pro-life supporters feel that it is unethical to have an abortion (Ertel,2009).
Those individuals that are pro-choice argue that abortions are ethical and that it should be the individuals’ rights. Abortion will remain a controversial issue based on individual preferences and morals. Pro-life and pro-choice groups will continue to feel that their support toward abortion is ethical. There are concerns that if abortion is not state funded than women may get abortions illegally and by untrained individuals. If abortions are performed by untrained individuals and in unsterile places than more complications may arise causing an increase in insurance bills or state funding of services.
The political considerations that impact the decisions made by politicians are sometimes based on what groups contribute to their campaign. These groups are the major stock holders in a lot of instances related to bills. Politicians tend to be very cautious when revealing their stance on abortion. Both the republican and democratic parties have individuals that support both sides. In this situation there were 4 democrats and 3 republicans that introduce SB 76. The main social consideration is that if abortion is not be paid for by state funded programs than women will have children that did not want to have children.
This may infringe upon the right of these individuals. The pro-choice groups have been fighting for the rights of women to make choices related to child-birth and abortion. These individuals may file complaints about discrimination (Staggenborg, 2009). The United States has been dealing with controversy surrounding abortion for many years. To some individuals abortion is acceptable and to others it is not. Some of society has not adapted to the state payment for abortions. These groups have started to speak up and voice their concerns on one side or another.
In the instance of payment of services both groups are split on whether or not abortions should be paid for with tax funding (Tumulty, 2009). After a through literature review one can say that abortion is one of the most controversial issues within society. Individuals are very opinionated on whether or not they feel it is right or not. The main consensus is that both groups feel that they have the best interest of the woman and her decision. Proponent and Opponent Arguments The two groups that will be discussed here are pro-choice and pro life. These specific groups have been involved in many bills related to abortion.
Both groups have strong arguments on their stance related to abortion. The pro-choice group fights for the right to allow all females the right to decide their reproductive choices. This group tries to discuss abortion, adoption, and parenthood. Their goal is to make all aware of the choices one has related to reproduction (Staggenborg, 1994). The pro-life group believes that it is ok to have autonomy as long as one does not breach the autonomy of others. This group does not feel that it killing a human being if an abortion is performed. Pro-choice does not completely support SB76. Abortion controversy will continue forever.
A concern of the pro-life group is that if this bill passes than there will be other bills to be introduced. The main concern of the pro-choice group is that they want women to have the right to choose. The pro-life group supports the SB 76 even though they do not support abortion (Pro-life. com, 2009). National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) is an example of a group of individuals that does not support abortion. The NRLC has written letters to both the senate and house requesting that insurance companies or state funds not to pay for elective abortions (National Right to Life, 2009).
The churches across the United States are pro-life. Pro-life also addresses the other alternative to abortion. These alternatives include adoption or keeping the child themselves. Pro-life groups have several counseling centers across the country. Some of these counseling centers have individuals that volunteer and share past abortions experiences with them (National Right to Life, 2009). This group of individuals is not judgmental but focus on being honest with these women on the effects that abortion may have on them later in life. Nursing Perspective
Registered Nurses (RN’s) are responsible for their own actions on how they care for individuals based on the Code of Ethics for Nurses. A registered nurse must respect the individual who chooses to have an abortion. As an RN, one, should not voice their personal opinion while caring for a patient with controversial issues such as abortion. The caregiver of a patient that is considering or has had an abortion must provide quality care (Code of Ethics for Nurses, 2009). The writer of this paper is a registered nurse. As an RN, this nurse does nderstand the importance of providing quality care to all patients. The patients that have had or are considering abortions should have adequate knowledge in the risks associated with abortion. These risks include both the physical and mental aspects. As a Christian, the RN knows that the bible states that one should not take the life of another. Abortion should not be used as a form of birth control. However, there should be specific times in which abortion should be covered. These times should include the following: rape or incest and when medically necessary.
The tax payers should not be responsible for paying for services in which is elective as in the case of abortion. SB 76 would not allow for state funding of abortions. If SB 76 does not pass the state will continue to support state funded abortions. The writer does feel that women should have the right to choose a form of birth control to prevent pregnancy but does not feel that choice should be abortion. The state could use the money used for abortion to provide further education on alternatives to prevent pregnancy if it is unwanted.
The only exception to the rule should be rape or incest and under life-threating circumstances. Abortion should not be an alternate form of birth control so the RN should provide a lot of education. Policy/Bill Recommendations In reviewing the number of abortions per year in the United States, the government should change the whole policy on allowing abortions. The bill should make it harder for one to get an abortion except under rape or incest and medical necessity. These individuals should be responsible for their own abortions. Even private insurances should be discouraged to cover abortions except when life threatening.
If SB 76 passes than the state will not pay for abortions. However, the bill should also address the issue of who will pay for complications that may arise from having the abortion. These issues may include the following: depression, anxiety, hemorrhage, infection, perforation of the uterus, and embolisms to name a few. The revision that should be made to this bill would make the patient responsible for any and all complications related to the abortion. However, the writer of this paper would like to see abortion illegal except in the mentioned special circumstances.
References Code of Ethics for Nurses with Interpretive Statements (2009). The American NursesAssociation. Retrieved December 6, 2009, fromhttp://www. nursingworld. org/MainMenuCategories/EthicsStandards/CodeofEthicsforNurses. aspx Ertelt, S. , West Virginia Hearing on Tax-Funded Abortion Ban Yields No Vote, Legal Threat. Lifenews. com March 24, 2009 Retrieved December 6, 2009 fromhttp://www. lifenews. com/state3980. html Guttmacher Institute. Get “In the Know”: Questions About Pregnancy, Contraception andAbortion Retrieved December 6, 2009, fromhttp://www. guttmacher. rg/intheknow/incidence. html Guttmacher Institute. State facts about West Virginia Abortion Retrieved December 6, 2009,from http://www. guttmacher. org/pubs/sfaa/pdf/west_virginia. pdf Mason, D. J. , Leavitt, J. K. , & Chaffee, M. W. (2006). Policy and politics in nursing and healthcare, 5th ed. Philadelphia, PA: W. B. Saunders National Right to Life (2009). Retrieved December 10, 2009, from http://www. nrlc. org/default. html Pro-life. com (2009) Retrieved December 7, 2009, from http://www. prolife. com/ Senate bill no. 76, State Funding of Abortion Prohibited.
West Virginia Legislature. RetrievedNovember 19, 2009, from the West Virginia Legislature website:http://www. legis. state. wv. us/Bill_Status/bills Staggenborg,S. , (1994). The Pro-Choice Movement: Organization and Activism in the Abortion,1st ed. Oxford University Press Tumulty, K. , (July 8, 2009). The Trouble With Abortion and Healthcare Reform. Time. Retrieved December 3, 2009, fromhttp://www. time. com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1909178,00. html Women’s Health Center of West Virginia Retrieved December 6, 2009 from http://www. whcwva. com/wv_abortionlaws. html