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LA Abortion Law Creates Confusion Concerning Miscarriage Treatment

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LA ABORTION LAW CONFUSION- Louisiana has a law banning nearly all abortions, including in cases of rape and incest, that took effect in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade last Summer., The law has been in effect since Aug. 1st. Louisiana’s near-total abortion ban does allow abortion only if the pregnancy endangers the mother or if the fetus is considered “medically futile”.

But when it comes to possible miscarriages, the way the law is worded confuses patients and doctors alike as some physicians won’t even schedule to see a pregnant woman until after 12 weeks due to fear of being investigated should the woman miscarry prior to that time. This happened to Kaitlyn Joshua of Baton Rouge. As reported by Public Radio WWNO in New Orleans; Joshua had concerns during her second pregnancy at 8 weeks but couldn’t get an exam until a month later because she says she was told by her clinic that miscarriages before 12 weeks could trigger an investigation. When she did see a doctor later, she had experienced pain and bleeding. Long-story short: the fetus stopped growing and after two ER visits later, she was sent home without a clear understanding if she was miscarrying or what her treatment options were even though she had excessive bleeding and was passing tissue. She eventually had a miscarriage but felt the delays put her life at risk.

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Kaitlyn and Landon Joshua were worried for Kaitlyn's health when she started to bleed heavily and had labor-like pains early in her pregnancy. But after visiting two different emergency rooms she couldn't get confirmation she was miscarrying or explain her treatment options.

Democratic State Rep. Katrina Jackson of Monroe crafted Louisiana’s abortion ban but, she in light of Joshua’s experience, said she would be open to adding exceptions to Louisiana’s abortion law. As reported by USA Today Network, Jackson said If it (the law) needs clarification for healthcare professionals to feel comfortable, then we will. I envision language saying at no point should treatment for miscarriages be considered abortion."

Chuck Smith brings more than 30 years' broadcast and media experience to Red River Radio. He began his career as a radio news reporter and transitioned to television journalism and newsmagazine production. Chuck studied mass communications at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and motion picture / television production at the University of California at Los Angeles. He has also taught writing for television at York Technical College in Rock Hill, South Carolina and video / film production at Centenary College of Louisiana, Shreveport.