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The good news: Not every bit of proposed legislation curtailing reproductive rights manages to get signed into law. If it did, there would have been 900 instead of 91 such laws enacted last year. The additional good news: Some states, a minority to be sure, still have laws on the books or have passed new ones that protect reproductive rights, including the right to have an abortion.

But, as the Guttmacher Institute's latest update shows, there is in the wake of last year's huge success continuing push to curtail women's right to abortion, to chop family planning from budgets, to give pharmacists leeway to refuse to provide certain birth control options, to allow insurers not to cover birth control and a host of other constraints.

The success of getting these curtailments enacted has spurred the forced-birthers and anti-contraceptive crowd to keep pushing their agenda where it has not yet taken hold.

Some highlights:

• Seventeen states have introduced bills this session of their legislatures to restrict abortions beyond the restrictions allowed under Roe v. Wade. Among them—a bill in Mississippi that would ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, and a number of so-called personhood bills that would give legal rights from conception onward.

• Ten states have introduced bills requiring all or some abortion providers to have hospital privileges. As we have reported, the worst of these has been Mississippi, where the governor signed such a bill that could mean the shutdown of the state's last remaining abortion clinic before the summer is over.

• A number of states, including Indiana and Tennessee, have introduced bills that would require   require all medication abortion providers to have hospital privileges at a hospital that is in the same county as the abortion clinic.

• Five states introduced or passed laws regulating crisis pregnancy centers. After seeing its 2011 law in this regard blocked by court order, South Dakota enacted a new law in March this year that "require[s] that abortion counseling include information on any research showing that some women (based on their 'physical, psychological, demographic or situational' characteristics) may be at higher risk of negative mental health outcomes associated with an abortion.

• Three states have introduced alternatives-to-abortion bills. In Kansas the bill would also prohibit abortion training in state-run facilities, create a priority system for distributing family planning funds and allocate funds for family planning.

• Fourteen states have introduced or passed and enacted bills prohibiting abortion coverage in insurance policies in the exchanges required to be set up under federal health care reform. The South Carolina bill would restrict abortion coverage in ALL private insurance packages. In Washington, however, a bill was passed in the state House of Representatives requiring insurers to cover abortion unless the purchaser opts out.

• Eleven states introduced bills affecting medication abortions. In Indiana, the Senate "passed a measure that would require a physician to examine a patient in person before prescribing medication for abortion, effectively banning telemedicine." The session adjourned before the bill progressed further.

• Several states this year have introduced, passed or enacted bills setting a gestational age after which abortions may not be performed. The law is already on the books in seven states.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Mon May 07, 2012 at 09:35 AM PDT.

Also republished by Abortion and Pro Choice.

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