Washington, DC – The following is a statement from Maureen G. Phipps, MD, MPH, FACOG, chief executive officer of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), and Eugene Toy, MD, FACOG, chair of ACOG District XI (Texas), regarding Senate Bill 8 going into effect in Texas:
“Texas SB8 represents a clear attack on the practice of medicine in our country and on decades of established legal precedent. By allowing third-party lawsuits against clinicians, by virtually banning all abortions, and by curtailing the sharing of information and support related to access to vital women’s health care, Texas’s new law creates a coercive environment for patients and clinicians across the spectrum of care and from all corners of the state.
“This is a far larger concern than one area of medicine or an individual’s personal convictions. By creating a pathway for litigation to be used as intimidation, SB8 will dissuade clinicians in the state of Texas from providing patients with the medical care that they need, and will clearly violate the patient-physician relationship. Clinicians should be able to provide patient-centered, evidence-based care and counsel, and patients should be able to access the care and information they need without fear of retribution. Such legislative interference will ultimately discourage compassionate, skilled clinicians from practicing in the state of Texas, further compromising patient access to care.
“Patients and those they trust, including the clinicians who are dedicated to ensuring they can access respectful care, deserve better than this harmful law.”