Indiana bill requiring inspections on all abortion clinics heads to governor's desk

(Reuters/Aaron P. Bernstein)Anti-abortion and pro-choice activists gather at the Supreme Court for the National March for Life rally in Washington.

A bill that would require inspections on all abortion clinics in Indiana is now headed to Gov. Eric Holcomb's desk after it was passed by the Senate earlier this week.

Senate Bill 340 was approved by the Senate on Wednesday by a vote of 37–9 and was passed by the House last month by a 67–26 vote.

The measure would require annual inspections on abortion facilities and would mandate hospitals, doctors and clinics to report any complications during an abortion, including hemorrhaging, infection, respiratory arrest, blood clots, incomplete abortion and others.

It would also require abortionists to report if a woman who wants to obtain an abortion expresses a desire to do so because she was abused, harassed or coerced.

Hospitals and abortion facilities applying for operational licenses would also be required to disclose whether they have been shut down or barred from obtaining legal documents because they have failed to comply with health and safety regulations, according to The Daily Caller.

The legislation also included a provision that would allow fire stations to install climate controlled padded incubators, where a person can drop off a baby so that they can be adopted, rather than abandon them in an unsafe place.

Critics have argued that the bill would allow the government to meddle in personal affairs while miring abortion clinics and medical providers in bureaucratic red tape. They also claimed that abortion has a low complication rate and questioned why the same requirements are not applied to other medical procedures.

The measure has been hailed by Indiana Right to Life President and CEO Mike Fichter after it was approved by the House in late February.

"The days of abortion businesses hiding injuries to women, or looking the other way when women are coerced into abortion, will hopefully come to an end with this important bill," said Fichter.

"The inclusion of safe haven baby boxes in this bill will be key to saving the lives of babies who might otherwise be at-risk of dying as a result of abandonment. We are thankful for those who took the lead on this issue years ago and have steadfastly moved this idea forward," he added.

Holcomb has not indicated whether he supports or opposes the bill, but he has signed a pro-life bill that arrived at his desk last year.

Texas-based abortion chain Whole Women's Health had attempted to open a clinic in South Bend, Indiana, but the Indiana Department of Health refused to grant the clinic a license in January, saying the abortion chain made "inaccurate statements" and "failed to meet the requirement that the Applicant is of reputable and responsible character."

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