Senate panel passes ultrasound bill

Proposal would require ultrasounds before abortions
Senate panel passes ultrasound bill

A bill that would require doctors to provide or arrange an ultrasound for women seeking abortions has advanced out of a Senate committee.

The legislation sponsored by Republican Sen. Mary Lazich of New Berlin would require physicians to perform or arrange for an ultrasound, except in a medical emergency or cases where the pregnancy is caused by sexual assault or incest. Doctors would have to show the ultrasound image to the woman and provide a thorough description of the fetus’ features.

Lazich says ultrasounds are common medical procedures, and women should be given full information about their pregnancy. But critics said the mandate would interfere in physicians’ medical decisions.

The Senate Health and Human Services Committee passed the measure Monday on a partisan 3-2 vote.