March 21, 2012 |
State Sen. Larry Farnese wants to ensure that government-mandated physical exams are an equal opportunity invader of privacy. Farnese (D., Phila.) says he plans to introduce a bill next week requiring men combating erectile dysfunction (ED) to undergo similar tests. That's in response to the widely criticized House Bill 1077 - supported by Gov. Corbett but now stalled after opposition by medical organizations - that would require invasive pre-abortion ultrasounds for women.
March 18, 2012 |
HARRISBURG - "You just have to close your eyes. " With those words about women and a bill mandating preabortion ultrasounds, Gov. Corbett stepped into a nationwide controversy - and, in the process, got a lesson in social media. By week's end, his comments were generating headlines from coast to coast and the video had gone viral. It played over and over on local and national news, along with YouTube, Facebook, and blogs, sparking countless conversations on Twitter under hashtags such as #waronwomen and #closeyoureyes.
March 15, 2012 |
SO YESTERDAY I was at Starbucks with Kathleen Kane, discussing our transvaginal ultrasounds. I had one 17 years ago, after a miscarriage. Kane underwent three of them in more recent years, also after losing a pregnancy. How do we feel about it? Let's just say that the passage of time hasn't mellowed our memories. Kane found her ultrasounds "invasive, uncomfortable and often humiliating. " My experience was similar, despite the sensitivity, kindness and professionalism of the technician administering the diagnostic test.
March 7, 2012
Legislation in Pennsylvania that would require ultrasound exams is a blatant attempt to discourage women from having legal abortions. The bill, proposed by Rep. Kathy Rapp (R., Warren), has 110 cosponsors and easily won committee passage last month. However, questions about similar legislation in Virginia have brought this train to a halt. A debate before the full House scheduled for next week has been postponed. The so-called Women's Right to Know bill would require a woman to undergo an ultrasound imaging exam to determine the gestational age of the fetus before getting an abortion.
March 1, 2012 |
HARRISBURG - The Republican leader in the Pennsylvania House says he doesn't plan to schedule a vote on a bill to mandate ultrasounds for women seeking abortions while members address questions that have arisen about it. A spokesman for Majority Leader Mike Turzai told the Associated Press on Wednesday that concerns about the bill in the medical community would also be fully vetted before the bill would be advanced. Sponsors of the Pennsylvania bill say it would require an ultrasound, but a woman wouldn't have to look at the printout.
February 29, 2012 |
Pennsylvania could be the next battleground in the fight over whether a woman seeking an abortion must have an ultrasound exam and, if so, whether it involves inserting a probe into her vagina. In Virginia last week, a preabortion ultrasound law derailed at the eleventh hour after opponents portrayed it as "state-sponsored rape" and late-night comedians piled on. ( The Daily Show 's Jon Stewart joked that it would turn women into "human Popsicles. ") On Tuesday, the Virginia legislature narrowly adopted a revised version that requires only the familiar "jelly-on-the-belly" external ultrasound - a change requested, with chagrin, by a prominent abortion foe, Gov. Bob McDonnell.
February 27, 2012
LAST WEDNESDAY, Virginia Gov. Bob O'Donnell backed off signing a law that would have required invasive, trans-vaginal ultrasounds for many women seeking abortions, but only after his state became a national laughingstock. Now Pennsylvania's state legislators apparently want to bask in ridicule and protest. A bill in the state House of Representatives, with 120 co-sponsors, would require any woman who wants an abortion to first get an ultrasound at her own expense. Some of the bill's supporters argue that H.B. 1077 doesn't specifically call for probes into private parts.
February 23, 2012 |
I WAS GOING to begin this column as a plea to Rick Santorum to shut the hell up already. Stop, I was going to beg Sen. McSweaterVest, with the nonsense that contraception is evil "because it's a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be. " Which he believes to be sex for procreation only. So, will Santorum move to the sofa after wife Karen is menopausal and her dusty ovaries have coughed out their last eggs? Enough, I was going to add, with the lunacy that public education is "anachronistic.
November 7, 2011 |
Question: I'm entering my late 30s and feel as if I'm about to take a giant step back. My marriage is collapsing, and I'm struggling to cope with close but long-distance friends who have stable (even happy!) marriages, babies, or kids. I don't want to avoid or lose those friends, but my heart is breaking as things unravel around me and I realize I will most likely never have a biological child. Every announcement I get, every card or gift I buy and send, every ultrasound profile picture on Facebook (really?
August 18, 2011 |
Should doctors start screening all pregnant women for a rare condition that won't become a problem for most of those who have it? Absolutely, say leading obstetrics researchers, because that problem is premature birth, the top cause of infant death and disability in the United States and other developed countries. The rate of preterm births - now 1 in 8 in this country - has been rising inexorably for 30 years, despite advances in obstetrics. Doctors have had little ability to predict which infants will make dangerously early debuts, and practically no way to prevent it. But now, researchers have convincingly shown that a five-minute vaginal ultrasound scan midway through pregnancy can identify women with a risk factor: a shortened cervix.