Assembly Bill 154 addresses the current shortage of health care professionals able to provide early abortion care in Californi
by Ruby Warnock
Last week AB 154, sponsored by Assemblymember Toni Atkins, was approved by the Assembly Business and Professions Committee. The bill addresses the current shortage of health care professionals able to provide early abortion care in California. Under the bill, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and nurse-midwives would be able to perform aspiration abortions after receiving training.
A recent six-year study led by UCSF's ANSIRH and published in the American Journal of Public Health showed that trained nurse practitioners, midwives and physicians assistants can provide early abortions as safely as physicians and that women greatly appreciate receiving care in their own communities.
The bill states, “According to the Guttmacher Institute, 52% of California counties lack an abortion provider (removing hospitals, which typically provide a small number of procedures for medical and fetal indications).” The approval of the bill would improve access to quality care for countless women in the state.
Currently in the United States, state regulations determine who can provide abortions, with several states specifically prohibiting non-physician clinicians from performing the procedure. Currently only four states allow non-physician to perform medication and aspiration abortions, and this landmark bill would make California the fifth!
Make sure to tell your Legislator you support the bill!