It is the first time that abortion services and abortion counseling will be offered by the VA.
WASHINGTON — The Department of Veterans Affairs announced Friday that it will allow veterans and their beneficiaries — including in states where abortion is illegal — access to abortions if the pregnant woman’s life or health is at risk or if rape or incest exist.
The VA said abortion services in these limited situations will be offered immediately once a document outlining the change is released in the federal register. It was unclear when the document filed with the register on Thursday would be released and a message left with the VA on Friday evening was not promptly returned.
“VA is taking this action because it has determined that access to abortion-related medical services is necessary to protect the lives and health of veterans,” said the document, which it called the interim final rule. “As abortion bans go into effect across the country, veterans in many states are no longer able to access abortion services in their communities, even when those services are needed.”
It is the first time that abortion services and abortion counseling will be offered by the VA. The document said that before the US Supreme Court’s June Roe v. Wade could have abortions in their communities.
Now the VA said that when VA employees work within their federal jobs, they can offer abortion treatments regardless of government restrictions. Twelve states have banned abortion at all stages of pregnancy, and most of these states do not allow exceptions for cases of rape or incest.
VA Secretary Denis McDonough called the move a “patient safety decision.”
According to the document, healthcare providers and their patients will decide on a case-by-case basis whether an abortion is necessary to save a woman’s life or health. In cases of rape or incest, a woman is not required to provide evidence of the crime, such as B. a police report as required by some states.
The document says that allowing a woman to self-report rape or incest in order to obtain an abortion “removes barriers to providing care” and is consistent with a long-standing VA policy of treating people experiencing military sexual trauma have suffered without having to report it.
Once the document is published in the Federal Register, the public has 30 days to comment.
https://www.king5.com/article/news/nation-world/va-plans-limited-abortion-access-to-veterans/507-0d6ef212-733d-4e6e-ab04-d6f6faf6ab9d VA plans limited abortion access to vets even in states with bans