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General Health : Government Last Updated: Apr 20, 2011 - 9:38:09 AM

Oklahoma forces women undergoing abortion to view their fetuses
By Sue Mueller
Oct 11, 2008 - 1:34:03 PM

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Saturday October 11, 2008 ( -- An advocate group sued the state of Oklahoma over legislation that prohibits a woman from getting an abortion unless she undergoes an ultrasound first.


The Center for Reproductive Rights claims in the lawsuit filed Thursday in Oklahoma County District Court that the requirement intrudes privacy and endangers health and assaults dignity.


The law effective as of Nov. 1 would make Oklahoma the fourth state in the country that requires that an ultrasound be performed prior to an abortion so that the woman can have a chance of viewing the fetus.   The other states are Alabama Louisiana and Mississippi.


The Oklahoma law is reportedly unique among the four states in that it requires that the ultrasound screen be turned toward the woman during the abortion and that the doctor explain what's on the screen including the fetus.   But the law does not require the woman to look at the screen.


The supporters of the law hope that the requirements would cause emotional disturbance in women who intend to seek an abortion that could in turn curtail their attempts to undergo such a procedure.

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