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South Dakota can penalize doctors for not giving care for babies born after attempted abortions

Governor Kristi Noem signed House Bill 1051, which requires medical professionals to offer any...
Governor Kristi Noem signed House Bill 1051, which requires medical professionals to offer any baby born alive the same medical care they would offer for any other child – regardless of the circumstances of the child’s birth.(Office of Governor Kristi Noem)
Published: Feb. 24, 2021 at 5:00 PM CST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem signed a bill that requires doctors to provide babies who survive an attempted abortion the same medical care as babies born other ways into law on Wednesday.

If doctors don’t provide medical care to babies still alive immediately after an attempted abortion, medical professionals can face disciplinary action, according to House Bill 1051. Doctors who fail to follow this law could be penalized $10,000 by the state.

“The pro-life cause continues even after a child is born, and this bill will guarantee the right to life for every baby that is born alive,” said Noem in a press release. “We expect doctors to treat all children equally, even those born in horrific circumstances. That’s basic human decency.”

The bill also allows mothers to sue any physician or abortion facility that violates the law and they could lose their medical license. The law now requires the Department of Health to report the number of babies who survive attempted abortions.

The bill’s primary sponsors were Fred Deutsch (R-Florence) and Al Novstrup (R-Aberdeen).

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