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Society ‘extremely disappointed’ by enactment of 2013 Wis Act 37

Release Date: July 8, 2013
Contact: Lisa Hildebrand - 608.442.3765 lisa.hildebrand@wismed.org

Statement attributable to:
Molli Rolli, MD, Chair, Wisconsin Medical Society Board of Directors
Timothy McAvoy, MD, President, Wisconsin Medical Society

“The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) is extremely disappointed with Gov. Scott Walker’s action Friday afternoon to enact 2013 Wisconsin Act 37. The new law requires that a woman considering an abortion first must undergo an ultrasound – even if she doesn’t want one – and that physicians must follow specific steps mandated by lawmakers when discussing the patient’s decision. The Society’s disappointment with Act 37 has nothing to do with the very emotional and sensitive social issue of abortion. Our disappointment rests squarely on our deep concern that this law is a direct infringement on the patient-physician relationship and injects non-evolving government mandates into medical science.

“The Society believes all medical decision-making should follow only after there has been a full and confidential discussion between patient and physician, and that these medical decisions are made after an assessment of the latest medical evidence. Enshrining these mandates for specific medical procedures into the state statutes virtually guarantees that the law will not keep pace with the latest medical science, to patients’ detriment.

“The Wisconsin Medical Society remains steadfast in its position that legislating what occurs in the exam room is unequivocally unacceptable.”