The Abortion Bill Texas Review
The abortion bill passed in Texas in 2020 has caused a lot of controversies in the entire country. While citing 2019 CDC data, Ramirez and Stovall (2022) show that the number of abortions in the U.S. was 629,898. This means there are 13.5 abortions for every 100 pregnancies (Ramirez & Stovall, 2022). The Texas heartbeat act prohibits abortion when a detectable heartbeat may be as early as six weeks into the pregnancy.
Providers and abortion rights advocacy groups would affect at least 85% of the abortions taking place in Texas. Many of the abortions done in the country are done between 10-12 weeks which, according to the bill, is too late since the heartbeat can already be detected (Woodruff, 2019). Many people would not know they are pregnant within the first six weeks and therefore will miss this time set for safe pregnancy termination.
Background and all Relevant Facts
The Texas heartbeat law penalizes physicians for performing or inducing an abortion after the heartbeat is detected. The Texas bill was placed against the Roe v. Wade 410 U.S 113 law. The Roe V. Wade 410 U.S. 113 was a landmark decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in which the court ruled that the constitution of the U.S. protects pregnant women’s liberty to choose to have an abortion (Ramirez & Stovall, 2022). This law struck down many U.S. federal and state abortion laws and has fueled the current debate on what extent abortion should be legal and who should have the right to determine the legality of the abortions.
Supporters and Opposers
Studies indicate that a normal heartbeat can be detected as early as six weeks, and it would be between 90-110 beats per minute. The presence of an embryonic heartbeat at this age is an assuring sign of health and pregnancy. As Ramirez and Stovall (2022) highlight, the supporters argue that the embryo is already human from the moment of fertilization.
However, since the heartbeat detects the presence of life, preventing abortions conducted after six weeks of life will ensure that life is protected from a young age (Woodruff, 2019). The bill supporters also want to protect the lives of unborn children who cannot get support for themselves.
The opposers suggest that while the heartbeat may be observed in the ultrasounds, the physicians cannot hear it through the stethoscope. Therefore the “heartbeat” may only be the movement of blood through the cells in the embryo from the mother. Additionally, the pregnancy is considered an embryo until the eighth week (Haining et al., 2022). The embryo does not have a fully formed heart and is a cluster of cells emitting electrical signals detected on an ultrasound. The ultrasound machine itself actually generates the heartbeat sounds during this time.
The key stakeholders who view the bill as a high priority include religious groups, health and women NGOs, private practices, national family planning boards, conservative political parties, the Ministry of Health, bureaucrats, and law enforcement. The religious groups do not support abortions since it is against their beliefs, and abortion is considered murder (Woodruff, 2019).
The health and women NGOs aim to protect the lives of women. Unwanted pregnancies lead to suffering for women and negatively impact their health. The national family planning board is interested in the bill since it fights for the right of women and couples to birth the number of children they can raise easily. When people have more children than they can afford to raise, they suffer from low-quality life, poor housing, and lower-quality food.
The stakeholders who do not view the bill as a high priority include executives, media, and academic groups. However, as Woodruff (2019) notes, the media tend to change its support for the bill depending on the situation. It, therefore, does not have a high-priority interest in the topic.
How the Bill Would Impact a Nurse’s Ability to Provide Safe and Quality Care
If this bill is passed and becomes a law, it will limit the nurse’s role in providing care for all patients. According to Cohen et al. (2021), nurses often face the challenge of providing quality care and ensuring that they give their respective patients sufficient support based on the situation and circumstances by which the patient gets pregnant.
Nurses at the Gender-Based Violence Unit handle patients with multiple cases, from rape to other violence directed at women, resulting in pregnancy. Such women would not be comfortable keeping the pregnancy or raising the child since that would be costly to raise alone without the father’s help.
Specific Actions That Nurses Can Take To Assist With The Passage Or Defeat Of The Legislation
Nurses may not have a direct influence on legislation and may not provide helpful solutions to the problem. However, through their respective capacities, nurses can provide helpful information based on their quality service to offer a professional perspective on the issue (Moore et al., 2021).
Nurses can share the risks women will start going through after the pregnancy. Another issue that nurses would address is highlighting different conditions that may trigger a patient to get an abortion. Having a fetal heartbeat is not enough and should not make one get arrested in the event that a patient is looking for abortion services and have other underline medical condition.
Cohen, I. G., Adashi, E. Y., & Gostin, L. O. (2021). The Supreme Court, the Texas Abortion Law (SB8), and the beginning of the end of Roe v Wade. JAMA, 326(15), 1473-1474. doi:10.1001/jama.2021.17639
Haining, C. M., Keogh, L. A., & Savulescu, J. (2022). The unethical Texas heartbeat law. Prenatal Diagnosis. doi: 10.1002/pd.6136.
Moore, C., Kabbe, A., Gibson, T. S., &Letvak, S. (2020). The pursuit of nurse practitioner practice legislation: a case study. Policy, Politics, & Nursing Practice, 21(4), 222–232. https://doi.org/10.1177/1527154420957259
Ramirez, K., & Stovall, M. (2022). Senate Bill 8: An Intersectional Analysis of Reproductive Justice Consequences of the Texas Abortion Ban. Retrieved from https://scholarworks.calstate.edu/downloads/4b29bc165
Woodruff, K. (2019). Coverage of abortion in select US newspapers. Women’s Health Issues, 29(1), 80–86. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.whi.2018.08.008
The Abortion Bill Texas Review Instructions
Select an active bill at the state or federal level that impacts the professional practice of nursing. In a 3-4 page paper (excluding the title and reference pages), summarize the provisions of the bill and clearly explain what the bill will accomplish. The paper should be no more than 4 pages, typed in Times New Roman using 12-point font, and double-spaced with 1\" margins. Your review of a bill paper should: Discuss the major provisions of the bill. Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the legislation by explaining the background and all relevant facts. Discuss any relevant history related to the legislation, pertinent votes, and issues that are stalling the legislation, etc. Use primary sources for this information. Identify key supporters and those who do not support the bill. Explain why some of these individuals support the bill and why some do not. Explore the positions of the key stakeholders in the bill, both pros and cons. Do not make assumptions about potential key stakeholders. Examine this area carefully so you are correctly reflecting the stakeholders positions. Discuss how the bill would impact a nurseâ€™s ability to provide safe and quality care or to practice to the highest scope of the nursing license. Explain specific actions that nurses can take to assist with the passage or defeat of the legislation Use Current APA Style, headings and references as appropriate.