Backers of the measure say women who lack adequate access to trained abortion providers face greater health risks.
“It becomes more and more problematic the longer it is delayed,” says Democratic Senator Hannah Beth-Jackson. “And it is frequently delayed because women do not have access. They have to drive long distances.”
But opponents argue that when complication arise Nursing Assistants, Physician Assistants and Midwives lack a doctor’s life saving skills and experience.
“That’s when the maximum training and expertise and access to the hospital privileges that doctors have that this class would not, come to bear,” says Republican Senator Jim Nielsen.
Trained non-physicians health care professionals performed thousands of abortions with a complication rate of less than two percent during a recently completed UC San Francisco pilot study.