California passes non-physician abortion legislation

Abortion is a sacrament of the liberal religion.  It is so important to liberals that steps are now being taken to eliminate the need to have doctors perform them.

From Townhall:

California to Legalize Non-Physician Abortions

Want an abortion in California? If a new law passes, a doctor will not even be necessary.

Bill AB 154 has passed both houses of the state legislature, and currently sits on Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk, where he is expected to sign it into law. The bill strips the requirement that an abortion be performed by a licensed physician or surgeon. Instead, a nurse practitioner, certified nurse midwife, or physician assistant would be allowed to do a suction aspiration or medical abortion on a woman.


The bill has been endorsed by the California Medical Association, and has been strongly supported by abortion advocates.

In California, if an animal needs an abortion, the procedure must be carried out by a licensed veterinary surgeon. It appears now that the State of California views humans as deserving a lower standard of care than a housecat.

They could set up centers at, say, those fast oil change places or at the shopping mall.

This is where “emanations from penumbras” leads.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Clinton says:

    So-called progressives have always insisted that they want abortion to be “safe, legal, and rare”.
    This latest news just shows that “legal” is the only thing that truly matters to them. “Rare” was
    never actually on their agenda– quite the opposite. And “safe”, as we see, is just negotiable.

  2. FrDulli says:

    So much for safe, legal, and rare.

    I think that this may mean a change in the grassroots of the medical establishment. Young doctors are not going through all this training and trouble in order to become abortionists. History has borne out the ugliness of abortion for society, for medicine, and most of all for the patients.

  3. pelerin says:

    Truly shocking. Another piece of news I found shocking today was about an 84 year old gentleman in France who has been fined 10,000€. His ‘crime’ was to enter a clinic and give a pair of minute bootees and a religious medal to a lady about to have an abortion. I found this on the website of the web newspaper ’20 minutes’. The usual sad comments are there including one person who called the gentleman a ‘religious fanatic.’ And this is France once known as the Eldest Daughter of the Church.

  4. pelerin says:

    I should have made it clear that according to the report the clinic concerned was a Family Planning clinic and the lady had decided there to have an abortion. She was not actually in an abortion clinic.

  5. APX says:

    The irony here is that executioners who perform lethal injection cannot be trained by doctors or medical practitioners because it goes against the Hippocratic Oath they take…

  6. jflare says:

    “Instead, a nurse practitioner, certified nurse midwife, or physician assistant would be allowed to do a suction aspiration or medical abortion on a woman.”

    Before we start thrashing the abortion lobby with intentional incompetence, we’d best admit that the above-mentioned personnel would typically have plenty of medical training AND be under the supervision of a doctor. I think it pretty disgusting, but those are the facts.

  7. Bob B. says:

    Jerry Brown, some Catholic…Jesuit seminary- trained for three years, went to Bezerkley and is a lawyer – all the worst things – he’ll sign it.

  8. Johnno says:

    The facts are that no legitimate doctor worth his salt wants to engage in murdering children and this is an increasing phenomenon.

    They tried to get rid of conscience protections to force doctors to do this, and to some degree have not been as successful as they’d have liked.

    So this is the next best thing. We’ve gone from unhygenic clinics and quack doctors to people who simply have no medical qualifications whatsoever. I hope this actually discourages more women from placing their lives in these murderer’s hands.

    Perhaps these same fools should also consider that they are in a business that is killing off their own potential ‘future clients’ and this is why profits are down year over year despite the government giving them cash handouts. It’s no surprise they are pushing to expand operations worldwide as part of Barry Obomba’s many Soros-led ‘humanitarian’ initiatives.

  9. benedetta says:

    Inevitably this will open the door to more Gosnell type clinics of horror. But just as the prolife community boycotts physicians who perform abortions, word will get out about these so called midwives, physicians assistants and nurses and they too will be boycotted. Watch how these health care “professionals” will shop their wares in the poorest parts of town…where are the dissenting Catholics on this? How can they just shrug at this hideousness.

  10. OUChevelleSS says:

    They’re just trying to push abortions into the back alley!

  11. Gail F says:

    Getting doctors out of the abortion business has been part of the movement from the beginning. Dr. Nathanson’s book “Aborting America” explains in great detail how he helped make sure that abortions WOULD be provided by doctors, in what he considered safe environments, instead of the “women helping woman” hippie deal so many activists wanted. They hated men and most doctors were men. It’s a hard book to read but essential if you want to know how abortion became legal and what people involved were thinking at the time. And Gosnell is mentioned in it as an example of exactly the sort of people Nathanson and Co. wanted to put out of business… That sure didn’t work, did it? Nathanson kind of lost his mind for a while when he realized the enormity of what he had done. But you can see how he thought, or wanted to think, legal abortions were a good thing when he started. But the result was nothing like he imagined.

  12. I’m genuinely shocked, not that California would pass such a bill, but that an organization with at least an ounce of credibility (I assume) like the California Medical Association would support it. Anyone with a modicum of common sense knows that abortion is, especially after the first trimester, a dangerous procedure to the mother. Even if you support abortion, as reprehensible as that is on its face, how could you actually think that surgical abortions performed by non-surgeons and non-doctors is ‘progress’ toward a healthier, more ethical practice of medicine? I mean, I’m assuming Californians still view abortion as the practice of medicine, right? Or is it some kind of pseudo-religious sacrament, similar to Baptism, that has to be loosened out to the widest possible body of performers? This is pure, unadulterated insanity.

  13. PostCatholic says:

    I have never inserted myself into abortion politics here, and I am not going to start now. But the idea that “Abortion is a sacrament of the liberal religion” I hope is some sort of construct you’ve invented where you conflate US liberal politics with the fervor of religion. The term “Liberal Religion” applies to a distinct category of religious adherence which can be defined by what practical theologian James Luther Adams called “Five smooth stones,” ennumerated thusly:

    1. Revelation and truth are not closed, but constantly revealed.
    2. Relationship between persons should never be coerced, but should rest on friendship and mutuality.
    3. People have a moral obligation to direct their lives toward the construction of a just and loving community.
    4. What is good is given shape, power and affirmation by social incarnation. (The single major difference point with Catholicism.)
    5. The resources that are present to create meaningful change justify an attitude of hope and ultimate optimism. (Famously stated by Theodore Parker and by MLK as “the arc of human history bends toward justice.”)

    Many religions can be said to belong to this paradigm, some Christian, some post-Christian, some non-Christian. Among them are the Quakers, the Unitarians, the Congregtionalists, and Reform Judaism. None of would think of the tragedy of abortion as “an outward sign of inward grace,” to borrow a Catholic definition. I hope you’ll clarify your term and that I don’t need to take offense.

  14. Joseph-Mary says:

    I thought the killing of the unborn child was supposed to be a private thing between a mother and “her doctor”???

    Of course the hired killer (abortionist) is not “her doctor” but the killer that sees her for a few minutes, long enough to suck the life out of her–literally. Or to cut it out piece by piece. Grusome business, this killing.

  15. downyduck says:

    A dental hygienist can’t fill a tooth, a paralegal can’t argue a case, but a nurse practitioner or a midwife can manipulate razor sharp instruments inside the vulnerable reproductive organs of a woman? …you foolish and senseless people, who have eyes and do not see, who have ears and do not hear.

  16. Johnno says:

    PostCatholic –

    You should know by now that Fr. Z’s continued use of the term about “Abortion being a sacrament of the left” is meant as simple mockery. Similar to statements about popular liberal ideals being a religion in that these are not simply treated as political things that can be changed or discarded or applied when reasonable, or subject to circumstances, but are often treated in a reverential religious manner and spoken as dogmatic, true and implementable for all time and forever de fide where nothing shall stand in its way, and great lengths shall be taken to get it.

    Much like a faithful Catholic may risk death, injury and breaking state laws in dark times of persecution in order to go to lengths to find a priest, hide him in a hole, and receive the sacrament he desperately needs. So too, you are witnessing the abortion advocates now willign to do the same for their blessed ‘sacrament.’

  17. raitchi2 says:

    Midlevel practitioners are able to safely perform a wide range of medical skills. As a physician assistant student, I can tell you a suction abortion is not a technically complicated skill. The morality of it is another matter.

  18. Pio12 says:

    This doesn’t surprise me. Years ago members of our campus Pro-life group sat in on a Planned Parenthood presentation at our school and listened to the lady whine about how the number of doctors willing to perform abortions was decreasing alarmingly because of the “stigma” and the “danger” that still exists because of the crazy “anti-choice” people.

    Also, there has been a movement of sorts of clinic escorts in our city becoming lay mid-wives and assisting at homebirths with one of their goals being that abortions could one day be performed in home-settings by lay midwives, thus protecting women from all the “hecklers” outside the clinic.

  19. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    GailF says, “Getting doctors out of the abortion business has been part of the movement from the beginning.” Johnno says, “The facts are that no legitimate doctor worth his salt wants to engage in murdering children and this is an increasing phenomenon.” FrDulli says, “I think that this may mean a change in the grassroots of the medical establishment. Young doctors are not going through all this training and trouble in order to become abortionists.”

    I do not think making it possible for “a nurse practitioner, certified nurse midwife, or physician assistant [to] be allowed to do a suction aspiration […] abortion” – getting them into “the abortion business”- has any implications of getting doctors out, or allowing them to opt out: I would look for all licensed doctors being legally compelled to perform abortions, and all medical and nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, and physician assistant students being legally compelled to learn how to perform abortions and thereafter to perform them on demand as a condition of their being licensed and allowed to practice.

    I remember a Labour Party MP in the mid-1980s telling a pro-abortion crowd that a doctor’s or nurse’s legal right of conscience should be relegislated to mean their responsibilities conscientously to perform the abortions demanded of them. I have no reason to think that those pursuing such a goal have grown less numerous.

    I would look forward (as soon as the legislative majorities are in place to attain it) any and all medical practice by dissenting doctors, nurse practitioners, nurse midwifes, and physician assistants to be relegated to ‘the back alley’, with heavy legal penalties for any incident of practicing medicine.

    Have you really forgotten or never encountered the works of Katherine Hancock Ragsdale, President of the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, MA, or of those earlier feminists who treat having an abortion as effectively a salutary rite of initiation?

  20. Giuseppe says:

    Physicians have been voting with their feet. There are not many Family Practice physicians (or GPs) who will even provide obstetric care. They have relegated the birthing industry to OB/GYNs. And most OBs are reluctant to provide surgical abortions.

    1st trimester abortions (12 weeks fetus is 2 inches long) are easily done via suction, non surgically, and an NP or PA could do this as easily as an OB. And many OBs are fine with this procedure.

    Once you have to inject medication into the uterus to stop a beating heart (2nd trimester D/C or D/E), most OBs demur. Having NPs or PAs do this is not quite putting it into the back alley, but it has that flavor. There are few physicians who are willing to chemically stop the heart and surgically dismember a fetus who not only looks like a preemie, but who is a preemie.

  21. Gratias says:

    You may have heard of puerperal fever and how many women lives were lost to it. Welcome back. If the lady wants to survive in good health what she needs is an expert CURETTAGE which you cannot get any longer. Jerry Brown is the Culture of Death.

  22. PostCatholic says:

    Johnno, I hope you’re correct. I do hope Rev. Zuhlsdorf will speak for himself to this point.

    There may indeed be a few wacky theologians who view abortion as a “rite of passage,” Venerator Sti Lot, and perhaps some of them belong to the Liberal Religious tradition (which doesn’t include the Episcopal church). There are also Catholic theologians out there with ideas about noospheres and female ordinations.

  23. eulogos says:

    I feel sure that nurse midwives, nurse practitioners and physician’s assistants will be as able as most doctors to perform a “safe” abortion-for the mother. [Let’s read what you wrote again…] This is the trend in medicine these days, for financial reasons. For instance, in mental health, those whose insurance is medicaid see a social worker for therapy and a psychiatric nurse practitioner for their medication management. A psychiatrist never enters into the picture. Primary care is now primarily conducted by NP’s and PA’s, under the very vague supervision of a doctor.
    My concern is that if this change in rules spreads everywhere, as I expect to happen, it will be difficult to become a nurse midwife or PA without learning to do an abortion, which means, actually doing one. It is already difficult to become a doctor without doing one. Thus these will become additional professions which are not open to Catholics, and thousands of people who really don’t want to do abortions, will have at least one on their consciences. This I find really disturbing.

    Susan Peterson

  24. Mojoron says:

    For a follower of the Great Mother of Calcutta, Jerry has surprised me in his ability to go way off the reservation when it comes to human decadence and outright murder.

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