I've started doing some research on the wrongful birth laws which are valid in several states, given that Kansas now seems to be trying to make it AOK for physicians to withhold health information from pregnant women if that information could lead them to choose to abort the embryo or fetus. "AOK" here refers to the fact that the proposal would rule out later malpractice suits in most cases.
Arizona has just passed an apparently similar law:
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:The part I bolded is the one I don't understand. What is "an intentional omission" in this context? Could a physician refuse to tell crucial test results to a patient and get away with it? Or is this law just about unintentional omissions? If so, how is "unintentional" defined?
Section 1. Title 12, chapter 6, article 12, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended by adding section 12-718, to read:
12-718. Civil liability; wrongful birth, life or conception claims; application
A. A person is not liable for damages in any civil action for wrongful birth based on a claim that, but for an act or omission of the defendant, a child or children would not or should not have been born.
B. A person is not liable for damages in any civil action for wrongful life based on a claim that, but for an act or omission of the defendant, the person bringing the action would not or should not have been born.
C. This section applies to any claim regardless of whether the child is born healthy or with a birth defect or other adverse medical condition.
D. This section does not apply to any civil action for damages for an intentional or grossly negligent act or omission, including an act or omission that violates a criminal law.
The Poptort.com appears to argue that the Arizona law would give physicians a pass if they enforce their own pro-life views on their patients and keep information from them:
Yesterday, the Arizona State Senate passed a bill that would ban something called “wrongful birth” lawsuits.
“Wrongful birth” lawsuits arise when “physicians don’t inform pregnant women of prenatal problems that could lead to the decision to have an abortion.” In other words, this bill would give doctors immunity for failing to give medical information about a patient’s health or the health of her fetus.
All this is confusing. If it's as bad as it might be, it's an outrage, something much worse than conscience clauses for pharmacists and so on. If it's not that bad, what are these laws and proposals really saying.
And where is the American Medical Association (AMA) in all this? Honest.