A new bill that just passed the Mississippi State House is supposed to provide more stringent rules for doctors who perform abortions. But instead, it is likely to slow down or even shut down the state’s only abortion clinic.
The bill, approved by a 80-37 margin in the Republican-controlled House, would require doctors performing abortions to have admitting privileges at a local hospital and be board-certified or eligible in obstetrics and gynecology.
While supporters of the bill said it was aimed at providing better health care for women, abortion rights supporters said it was crafted with a view toward closing Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the state’s only abortion facility.
Only one of the three physicians who provide abortions at the clinic in Jackson has admitting privileges at a local hospital though all three are board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology, said Diane Derzis, the clinic owner.
Why do the other two doctors not just get admitting privileges? Because the local hospitals are turning their requests down.
The senate will be voting on the bill next, and then it would proceed to the governor, who is likely to sign it.