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Health and Medicine

Idaho Lawmakers Consider Rules For Doctors Prescribing Abortion Pill

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Idaho lawmakers introduced a bill Thursday that would establish requirements for doctors who prescribe abortion drugs like RU-486.

It also would let the families of patients and prosecutors file suits against physicians who don’t comply.

David Ripley of the group Idaho Chooses Life brought the bill before an Idaho House committee. He said the bill doesn't create a ban.

“What it does do is create some common sense protections for women and girls considering a chemical abortion,” Ripley said.

Many of the steps the bill would write into law are similar to existing medical guidelines. The bill would require preliminary physical exams and would mandate that doctors be able to provide surgical intervention.

Afterward, the doctor's office must make an effort to bring the patient in for a follow-up.

A spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood said the bill applies a one-size-fits-all approach to women’s medical care and that medical malpractice laws are already on the books.

The bill would let the patient, her husband or -- if the patient is deceased -- her parents seek damages against providers who violate the rules. County prosecutors could seek injunctions against the abortion provider.

The Idaho House State Affairs Committee voted on party lines to introduce the measure.