2011 North Carolina General Statutes
Chapter 90 Medicine and Allied Occupations.
Article 1I - Woman's Right to Know Act.
90-21.82. Informed consent to abortion.
90‑21.82. Informed consent to abortion.
No abortion shall be performed upon a woman in this State without her voluntary and informed consent. Except in the case of a medical emergency, consent to an abortion is voluntary and informed only if all of the following conditions are satisfied:
(1) At least 24 hours prior to the abortion, a physician or qualified professional has orally informed the woman, by telephone or in person, of all of the following:
a. The name of the physician who will perform the abortion.
b. The particular medical risks associated with the particular abortion procedure to be employed, including, when medically accurate, the risks of infection, hemorrhage, cervical tear or uterine perforation, danger to subsequent pregnancies, including the ability to carry a child to full term, and any adverse psychological effects associated with the abortion.
c. The probable gestational age of the unborn child at the time the abortion is to be performed.
d. The medical risks associated with carrying the child to term.
e. The display of a real‑time view of the unborn child and heart tone monitoring that enable the pregnant woman to view her unborn child or listen to the heartbeat of the unborn child are available to the woman. The physician performing the abortion, qualified technician, or referring physician shall inform the woman that the printed materials and Web site described in G.S. 90‑21.83 and G.S. 90‑21.84 contain phone numbers and addresses for facilities that offer the services free of charge. If requested by the woman, the physician or qualified professional shall provide to the woman the list as compiled by the Department.
f. If the physician who is to perform the abortion has no liability insurance for malpractice in the performance or attempted performance of an abortion, that information shall be communicated.
g. The location of the hospital that offers obstetrical or gynecological care located within 30 miles of the location where the abortion is performed or induced and at which the physician performing or inducing the abortion has clinical privileges. If the physician who will perform the abortion has no local hospital admitting privileges, that information shall be communicated.
If the physician or qualified professional does not know the information required in sub‑subdivisions a., f., or g. of this subdivision, the woman shall be advised that this information will be directly available from the physician who is to perform the abortion. However, the fact that the physician or qualified professional does not know the information required in sub‑subdivisions a., f., or g. shall not restart the 24‑hour period. The information required by this subdivision shall be provided in English and in each language that is the primary language of at least two percent (2%) of the State's population. The information may be provided orally either by telephone or in person, in which case the required information may be based on facts supplied by the woman to the physician and whatever other relevant information is reasonably available. The information required by this subdivision may not be provided by a tape recording but shall be provided during a consultation in which the physician is able to ask questions of the patient and the patient is able to ask questions of the physician. If, in the medical judgment of the physician, a physical examination, tests, or the availability of other information to the physician subsequently indicates a revision of the information previously supplied to the patient, then that revised information may be communicated to the patient at any time before the performance of the abortion. Nothing in this section may be construed to preclude provision of required information in a language understood by the patient through a translator.
(2) The physician or qualified professional has informed the woman, either by telephone or in person, of each of the following at least 24 hours before the abortion:
a. That medical assistance benefits may be available for prenatal care, childbirth, and neonatal care.
b. That public assistance programs under Chapter 108A of the General Statutes may or may not be available as benefits under federal and State assistance programs.
c. That the father is liable to assist in the support of the child, even if the father has offered to pay for the abortion.
d. That the woman has other alternatives to abortion, including keeping the baby or placing the baby for adoption.
e. That the woman has the right to review the printed materials described in G.S. 90‑21.83, that these materials are available on a State‑sponsored Web site, and the address of the State‑sponsored Web site. The physician or a qualified professional shall orally inform the woman that the materials have been provided by the Department and that they describe the unborn child and list agencies that offer alternatives to abortion. If the woman chooses to view the materials other than on the Web site, the materials shall either be given to her at least 24 hours before the abortion or be mailed to her at least 72 hours before the abortion by certified mail, restricted delivery to addressee.
f. That the woman is free to withhold or withdraw her consent to the abortion at any time before or during the abortion without affecting her right to future care or treatment and without the loss of any State or federally funded benefits to which she might otherwise be entitled.
The information required by this subdivision shall be provided in English and in each language that is the primary language of at least two percent (2%) of the State's population. The information required by this subdivision may be provided by a tape recording if provision is made to record or otherwise register specifically whether the woman does or does not choose to have the printed materials given or mailed to her. Nothing in this subdivision shall be construed to prohibit the physician or qualified professional from e‑mailing a Web site link to the materials described in this subdivision or G.S. 90‑21.83.
(3) The woman certifies in writing, before the abortion, that the information described in subdivisions (1) and (2) of this section has been furnished her and that she has been informed of her opportunity to review the information referred to in sub‑subdivision (2)e. of this section. The original of this certification shall be maintained in the woman's medical records, and a copy shall be given to her.
(4) Before the performance of the abortion, the physician who will perform the abortion or the qualified technician must receive a copy of the written certification required by subdivision (3) of this section. (2011‑405, s. 1.)
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