National Partnership for Women & Families

Oklahoma | In the News

States Slow Pace of Antiabortion-Rights Legislation, But Restrictions Up Overall, Guttmacher Report Shows
States passed fewer abortion restrictions in the first half of this year compared with the same time period in any of the past three years, but state laws restricting abortion access continue to vastly outnumber those expanding access, according to a new report from the Guttmacher Institute, Vox reports.

Admitting Privileges Laws Threaten Abortion Access in Large Swaths of U.S.
State laws requiring that abortion providers have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals threaten to leave women in broad areas of the country without abortion access in their region, particularly in rural and low-income parts of the South and Midwest, the AP/Sacramento Bee reports.

Okla. Enacts New Medication Abortion Restrictions After Court Rejects Similar Law
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) has signed into law a bill (HB 2684) that will restrict the use of medication abortion drugs in the state, the AP/New York Times reports.

Okla. Abortion Restrictions Face Likely Legal Challenge, But Supporters, Opponents Dispute Outcomes
Oklahoma lawmakers who championed antiabortion-rights legislation that is scheduled to take effect on Nov. 1 expressed confidence on Thursday that the measures would withstand likely legal challenges, while abortion-rights supporters argued that the laws will be overturned, The Oklahoman reports.

Featured Blog
"Repro Wrap: An Abortion is not a Luxury Vehicle and Other News," (Marty, Care2, 9/6).

Okla. Gov. Fallin Signs Admitting Privileges Bill
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) on Wednesday signed into law a bill (SB 1848) that will require abortion providers in the state to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles, Reuters reports.

Perinatal Hospice Notification Requirement Becomes Law
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) has signed into law a bill (HB 2685) that will require abortion providers to notify women whose fetuses have anomalies incompatible with life that they may seek out perinatal hospice care instead of abortion, the AP/Tulsa World reports.

Supreme Court Dismisses Okla. Appeal of Ultrasound Law
The Supreme Court rejected Oklahoma's appeal to reinstate a state law (HB 2780) that would require women to undergo an ultrasound before an abortion, Bloomberg reports.

Okla. Abortion Restrictions Questioned by Some State Leaders
Oklahoma conservatives in recent years have enacted some of the nation's harshest abortion restrictions, but some state leaders are questioning whether they have gone too far in limiting women's options, MSNBC reports.

La. Gov. Expected To Sign Admitting Privileges Bill
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) is expected this week to sign into law a bill (HB 388) that will require abortion providers in the state to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals, Reuters reports.

Okla. Admitting Privileges Bill Heads to Gov.
The Oklahoma House on Friday passed a bill (SB 1848) that would require abortion providers in the state to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital, among other provisions, the AP/Sacramento Bee reports.

Featured Blogs
"Repro Wrap: Here a Clinic, There a Clinic, Soon Nowhere a Clinic, and Other News," (Marty, Care2, 5/23); "Louisiana Committee Passes Bill That Would Keep Pregnant Women on Mechanical Support Against Their Wishes," (Wilson, RH Reality Check, 5/23).

NYT Editorial: Blocking Abortion Access is Real Aim of State Laws
"[I]n state after state, with the enthusiastic support of Republican lawmakers, it has become increasingly difficult, if not impossible, for women to get safe and legal abortion care," a New York Times editorial states.

Abortion Clinic Rules, Stem Cell Research Ban Advance in Okla. House
The Oklahoma House last week passed a bill (SB 1848) that would place increased restrictions on abortion clinics and doctors and bar embryonic stem cell research in the state, the AP/Washington Times reports.

Featured Blog
"Oklahoma Governor Signs New Bill Restricting Medication Abortion," (Wilson, RH Reality Check, 4/23).

Okla. Medication Abortion Bill Heads to Gov. Fallin
The Oklahoma Senate on Tuesday passed a bill (HB 2684) that would restrict the use of medication abortion drugs, sending the measure to Gov. Mary Fallin (R), the AP/Kansas City Star reports.

Okla. House Panel Advances Abortion Clinic, Emergency Contraceptive Restrictions
An Oklahoma House panel on Tuesday advanced two bills that would impose strict regulations on abortion clinics and restrict access to emergency contraception, the Tulsa World reports.

Medication Abortion Restrictions Advance in Okla. Senate
An Oklahoma Senate committee has advanced a measure (HB 2684) that would restrict the use of medication abortion drugs in the state, the AP/Oklahoman reports.

Okla. House Tries Again on Medication Abortion Restrictions
The Oklahoma House has approved a measure (HB 2684) that would restrict the use of medication abortion in the state, the Tulsa World reports.

Okla. Bill Would Set Age Limits on Emergency Contraception
The Oklahoma Senate on Wednesday approved a bill (SB 1219) that would prohibit individuals younger than age 17 from purchasing emergency contraception without a prescription, the AP/Sacramento Bee reports.

Abortion Restrictions Move Forward in Okla. House, Senate
The Oklahoma House on Thursday passed a bill that would place new restrictions on abortion clinics and medication abortions, Reuters reports.

Hospice Notification Bill Advances in Okla.
The Oklahoma House on Thursday unanimously approved a bill (HB 2685) that would require abortion providers to notify women whose fetuses have fatal defects that they may seek out perinatal hospice care instead of abortion, even though the services are not available in the state, the AP/Oklahoman reports.

Admitting Privileges Bill Advances in Okla.
Earlier this week, the Oklahoma Senate Committee on Health and Human Services in a 5-3 vote approved a measure (SB 1848) that would require physicians performing abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of the clinic, the Tulsa World reports.

Abortion-Rights Opponents Succeeding With State-Level Bans on Abortion Coverage
Although a federal bill restricting abortion coverage is not expected to advance beyond the House, abortion-rights opponents have prohibited most health plans from offering such coverage in many states, Mother Jones reports.

Legal Fights Over State Laws Offer Ample Chances for Supreme Court Intervention
It is "only a matter of time" before the Supreme Court decides to hear one of several ongoing challenges to state-level abortion restrictions, USA Today reports.

Featured Blogs
"Attorneys for Indiana Defend TRAP Law in Federal Court" (Jessica Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check, 11/4), "Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Decision Striking Oklahoma Medication Abortion Ban" (Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check, 11/4) and "Texas Abortion Providers File Emergency Petition With Supreme Court Over HB 2" (Mason Pieklo, RH Reality Check, 11/4).

Supreme Court Dismisses Okla. Medication Abortion Case; State Ruling Stands
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday dismissed Oklahoma's appeal to reinstate a law (HB 1970) that would have restricted medication abortion in the state, USA Today reports.

Latest Court Decisions Highlight Increased State Restrictions on Medication Abortions
Two court rulings this week on medication abortion laws in Oklahoma and Texas highlight a growing trend among states restricting the use of the drugs used in the method, Mother Jones reports.

Okla. Court Clarifies Medication Abortion Ruling, Setting Stage for Supreme Court Action
In response to a request from the U.S. Supreme Court, the Oklahoma Supreme Court on Tuesday clarified that a 2011 state abortion law (HB 1970) requiring physicians to follow FDA protocols for medication abortion drugs "effectively bans all medication abortions," the Washington Post reports.

Law Pitting 'Fetal Protections' Against Pregnant Women's Rights Faces First Federal Lawsuit
A lawsuit filed this month is the first test in federal court for a 1998 Wisconsin law (Act 292) allowing child-welfare officials to forcibly confine pregnant women who allegedly use illegal drugs or alcohol "to a severe degree" and refuse to accept treatment, the New York Times reports.

National Journal: How 20-Week Bans Force Women To Carry Dying Fetuses
National Journal examined how 20-week abortion bans affect couples who are told their fetus will not survive or will be born with severe mental or physical problems.

Docket for Supreme Court's New Term Includes Okla. Medication Abortion Law
In the new term that begins today, the Supreme Court's docket includes a case that involves an Oklahoma law (HB 1970) restricting the use of medication abortion, the New York Times reports.

Featured Blogs
"Cline Symposium: Oklahoma Law Could Force Doctors To Provide Substandard Medical Care to Women Using Medications To End a Pregnancy" (Jennifer Blasdell/Nancy Stanwood, SCOTUSblog, 9/20) and "California Governor was Right To Veto Bill Allowing Researchers To Pay Women for Their Eggs" (Marcy Darnovsky/Susan Berke Fogel, Our Bodies Ourselves' "Our Bodies, Our Blog," 9/5).

Featured Blog
"Everything You Need To Know About The Abortion Case That's Headed to The Supreme Court" (Culp-Ressler, "ThinkProgress," Center for American Progress, 9/11).

Likely Supreme Court Case Will Test Claim That Abortion Restrictions 'Protect' Women's Health
The "canny genius" of the wave of antiabortion laws in the last few years "is that they reduce access to abortion in the name of protecting women's health" and "are written to seem reasonable, sober, and safety based," Emily Bazelon writes in Slate.

Okla. Law Will Be Next Supreme Court Abortion Case, Predicts NYT's Greenhouse
The Supreme Court's next abortion case "has arrived" in the form of a disputed Oklahoma law, and abortion-rights supporters are concerned that Justice Anthony Kennedy could cast a deciding vote that broadens states' ability to impose restrictions on the procedure, Linda Greenhouse writes in the New York Times' "Opinionator."

Judge Blocks Okla. Emergency Contraception Law
An Oklahoma judge on Monday issued a temporary injunction to block enforcement of a state law that imposes age and other restrictions on access to emergency contraception, the New York Times reports.

Lawsuit Challenges Okla. Emergency Contraception Restrictions
Reproductive-rights advocates on Thursday filed a lawsuit seeking to block an Oklahoma law that limits access to emergency contraception, the AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Supreme Court To Review Okla. Medication Abortion Law, Asks State Court for Clarification
The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday agreed to review an Oklahoma medication abortion law (HB 1970), pending clarification from the Oklahoma Supreme Court on its understanding of the statute, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Featured Blog
"Oklahoma Legislature's Wrong Priorities During Crisis" (Cox, Huffington Post blogs, 5/22).

Okla. Gov. Approves Stricter Parental Consent Requirements
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) on Tuesday signed into law a bill (HB 1361) that makes the state's parental consent requirements more onerous for minors seeking abortions, AP/KRMG reports.

Okla. House Advances New Requirements for Parental Notification Law
The Oklahoma House on Tuesday approved a bill (HB 1361) that would tighten parental notification requirements for minors seeking abortions, the Tulsa World reports.

Okla. Attorney General Asks U.S. Supreme Court To Reinstate Antiabortion Law
Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt (R) on Friday filed a petition asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review a ruling that struck down a state law (HB 2780) requiring women seeking an abortion to view an ultrasound image and hear a description of the fetus, AP/KSWO reports.

Okla. House Approves Changes to Abortion Provider Reporting Requirements
The Oklahoma House on Tuesday voted 79-15 to approve legislation (HB 2015) that would add more than two dozen questions to a questionnaire abortion providers must already complete, the AP/San Antonio Express-News reports.

Okla. House Approves Two Antiabortion Measures
The Oklahoma House on Tuesday approved two antiabortion-rights bills, related to the state's parental consent law, the AP/San Antonio Express-News reports.

Bills To Ban Abortion Gain Prominence Among State Conservatives
In a shift from past decades, abortion-rights opponents have increasingly focused on state legislation banning abortion after certain points in pregnancy, ABC News reports.

Okla. House Indefinitely Delays Bill Banning Medicaid Coverage of Emergency Contraception
The Oklahoma House on Thursday indefinitely delayed a bill (HB 2039) that would ban the state's Medicaid authority from covering emergency contraception, after the bill's sponsor raised concerns that the bill might jeopardize the state's federal Medicaid funding, the AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Okla. Panel Approves Changes to Abortion Provider Reporting Requirements
The Oklahoma House Public Safety Committee on Tuesday passed a measure (HB 2015) that would add more than two dozen questions to an already lengthy questionnaire abortion providers must complete under a 2010 state law, the AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

More States Moving To Restrict Abortion Coverage
Federal fights over abortion coverage leading up to passage of the Affordable Care Act (PL 111-148) have raised state lawmakers' consciousness about their ability to restrict health insurers from covering the procedure, Politico reports.

Antiabortion-Rights State Lawmakers Hope To Continue Momentum of Last Two Years
Emboldened by new Republican majorities in three states and GOP control of both legislative chambers in 26 states, abortion-rights opponents are working to build on the momentum of the last two years, when 135 state abortion restrictions were enacted, Bloomberg reports.

Okla. Lawmaker Files 'Personhood' Bill Replicating Failed Measure From Last Year
Oklahoma Rep. Mike Reynolds (R) has filed a bill (HB 1029) for the upcoming legislative session that would redefine when life begins, potentially reigniting last year's debate over a nearly identical measure, the Tulsa World reports.

States in 2012 Passed Second-Highest Number of Abortion Restrictions Ever, Guttmacher Finds
States passed 43 abortion restrictions in 2012, a "sharp decrease" from 2011 but nonetheless the "second-highest number" enacted in a single year, according to a new study by the Guttmacher Institute, The Hill's "Healthwatch" reports.

Judge Allows Okla. To End WIC Contract With Planned Parenthood
A federal judge on Dec. 24 rejected Planned Parenthood's request to stop the Oklahoma Department of Health from terminating its contract to provide services through the federal Women, Infants and Children program, Reuters reports.

Judge Hears Arguments Over Denied WIC Contract in Planned Parenthood Case
At a hearing on Thursday, Planned Parenthood argued that political motives prompted the Oklahoma Department of Health's decision to terminate the group's contract for providing services through the federal Women, Infants and Children program, the Tulsa World reports.

Texas Gov. Perry Calls for 20-Week Abortion Ban; New Suits Filed Over Women's Health Program
Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) on Tuesday voiced his support for legislation that would ban abortion in the state after 20 weeks of gestation, the Houston Chronicle reports.

Okla. Court's Rejection of Antiabortion Laws Should 'Be a Message to Lawmakers,' Editorial State
The Oklahoma Supreme Court's recent rejection of two state antiabortion laws should "be a message to lawmakers to give up on this line of legislation," a Tulsa World editorial states.

Okla. Supreme Court Rejects Ultrasound, Medication Abortion Laws
The Oklahoma Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld rulings rejecting two state laws that required women seeking an abortion to view an ultrasound image and restrict the use of medication abortion drugs, the AP/Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Planned Parenthood Files Suit Over Terminated WIC Contract in Okla.
Planned Parenthood of the Heartland on Friday filed a federal lawsuit challenging the Oklahoma Department of Health's decision to end its contract for providing services through the federal Women, Infants and Children program, the Tulsa World reports.

Featured Blogs
"Getting Reproductive Rights out of Politics" (Nancy Northup, Huffington Post blogs, 11/5).

Supreme Court Declines To Hear Okla. 'Personhood' Case
The Supreme Court on Monday refused without comment to hear an appeal by an antiabortion group to place a "personhood" measure on the Oklahoma ballot, Reuters reports.

Battle Over Planned Parenthood Funding Becomes National Issue
Lawmakers' efforts to cut off funding to Planned Parenthood in Arizona, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee and other states have helped propel the organization to the forefront of national political debates, the Washington Post reports.

Okla. Ends WIC Contract With Planned Parenthood
The Oklahoma Department of Health will not renew a contract with Planned Parenthood of the Heartland to provide services through the federal Women, Infants and Children program in the Tulsa area, the Tulsa World reports.

Most State 'Fetal Pain' Bills Yet To Face Court Challenges
Several states have enacted abortion bans later in pregnancy based on the disputed theory that a fetus can feel pain after 20 weeks of gestation, but only one has been challenged in court, Politico reports.

'Personhood' Group Asks Supreme Court To Consider Okla. Ballot Initiative
Personhood USA on Monday filed an appeal with the Supreme Court over an Oklahoma court's ruling that invalidated a state ballot initiative (Initiative Petition No. 395) that sought to define fertilized eggs as people, The Hill's "Healthwatch" reports.

Report Notes 40 Laws Enacted in 15 States That Could Hinder Women's Access to Abortion Care, Reproductive Health Service
U.S. women increasingly face barriers to obtaining reproductive health services as states continue to pass laws restricting access, according to a report released on Wednesday by the Center for Reproductive Rights, Reuters reports.

High Number of State Abortion Restrictions Marked by Increased Focus on 'Fetal Pain' Bills
The number of state-level abortion restrictions is approaching record-setting levels again this year, a fact that some abortion-rights opponents attribute to their increased focus on so-called "fetal pain" legislation, Stateline/Kaiser Health News reports.

Okla. Appeals Ruling That Struck Down State Ultrasound Law
Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt (R) on Thursday appealed a ruling against a state law that requires doctors to show women ultrasounds of their fetuses and describe the images before providing abortion care, The Oklahoman reports.

Okla. Court Strikes Down Medication Abortion Law
Oklahoma District Court Judge Donald Worthington has struck down a state law (HB 1970) restricting the use of medication abortion drugs, the AP/NECN reports.

Okla. Gov. Fallin Signs Bill Allowing Lawsuits Against Abortion Providers
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) on Tuesday signed into law a bill (HB 2561) permitting lawsuits against abortion providers -- including any doctor who prescribes medication abortion drugs -- who do not follow the state's voluntary and informed consent laws, The Oklahoman reports.

Okla. House Approves Bill Allowing Lawsuits Against Abortion Providers, Sends to Gov. Fallin
The Oklahoma House on Wednesday voted 89-0 to approve a bill (HB 2561) that would allow women to file lawsuits against abortion providers and anyone who prescribes abortion-inducing drugs if they violate state abortion law, the AP/Wichita Falls Times Record News reports.

Okla. Court Rules Proposed 'Personhood' Measure is Unconstitutional
The Oklahoma Supreme Court on Monday unanimously ruled that a proposed "personhood" ballot measure (Initiative Petition No. 395) that would have defined a fertilized egg as a person is unconstitutional, The Oklahoman reports.

Okla. Gov. Fallin Signs Fetal Heartbeat Bill
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) on Friday signed into law a bill (SB 1274) that will require physicians to offer women a chance to listen to a fetal heartbeat prior to an abortion, KTUL reports.

Okla. 'Personhood' Measure Fails To Advance
The Oklahoma House adjourned on Thursday without taking action on a "personhood" bill (SB 1433), meaning that the measure will not advance this year, The Oklahoman reports.

Supposed Threats to 'Religious Freedom' Really About Access to Contraception, Women's Advocates Say
Although opponents of the federal contraceptive coverage rules claim their fight is about "religious freedom," women's and family planning groups say opponents' true objective is to restrict access to contraception, Kaiser Health News/Sacramento Bee reports.

Okla. House Rejects 'Personhood' Bill
Oklahoma House Republicans on Thursday decided to abandon efforts to pass a "personhood" bill (SB 1433) this year, the Oklahoman reports.

Okla. House Sends Fetal Heartbeat Measure to Governor
The Oklahoma House on Thursday voted to approve a bill (SB 1274) that would require physicians to offer women a chance to listen to a fetal heartbeat prior to an abortion, the AP/Oklahoman reports.

Okla. Attorney General To Appeal Ruling Striking Down Ultrasound Law
Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt (R) plans to appeal a judge's ruling last week that struck down a state law requiring a woman seeking abortion care to first view an ultrasound image of the fetus and listen to a detailed description of it, KJRH reports.

Proposed Okla. 'Personhood' Ballot Measure Challenged in Court
The American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Reproductive Rights on Thursday filed a lawsuit in Oklahoma Supreme Court seeking to block a proposed "personhood" measure from the state's November ballot, the AP/Columbus Republic reports.

Okla. Judge Strikes Down State Law Requiring Ultrasound, Description of Image Before Abortion
Oklahoma County District Judge Brian Dixon on Wednesday struck down a state law that would have required a woman seeking abortion care to first view an ultrasound image of the fetus and listen to a detailed description of the image, CNN reports.

Okla. House Panel Advances 'Personhood' Bill
The Oklahoma House Public Health Committee on Tuesday voted 7-4 to approve an amended version of a "personhood" bill (SB 1433) that would grant "the unborn child at every stage of development all the rights, privileges and immunities available to other" state residents, the Tulsa World reports.

Okla. Senate Advances Bill Requiring Abortion Providers To Tell Women About Chance To Hear Fetal Heartbeat
The Oklahoma Senate on Tuesday voted 34-8 to approve a bill (SB 1274) that would require doctors to tell women that they have a right to hear the fetal heartbeat before an abortion, Reuters reports.

Hundreds Protest Okla. 'Personhood' Bill
Outside of Oklahoma's Capitol on Tuesday, hundreds of abortion-rights advocates protested "personhood" legislation (SB 1433), the Tulsa World reports.

Okla. Senate Approves 'Personhood' Bill
The Oklahoma Senate on Wednesday voted 34-8 to approve a bill (SB 1433) that would grant fertilized eggs "all the rights, privileges and immunities" of citizens, AP/MSNBC reports.

Okla. Bill Would Ban Use of Aborted Fetuses in Food Industry
Oklahoma state Sen. Ralph Shortey (R) last week introduced a bill (SB 1418) that would ban "the manufacture or sale of food or products [that] use aborted human fetuses," NPR's "The Two-Way" reports.

Judge Temporarily Blocks Okla. Law Restricting Use of Abortion Drugs
Oklahoma County District Judge Daniel Owens on Wednesday granted a temporary injunction against a new state law (HB 1970) that would restrict the use of medication abortion drugs, Reuters reports.

Lawsuit Challenges Okla. Law Restricting Medication Abortion
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice and Tulsa-based reproductive health care provider Reproductive Services on Wednesday challenged a state law that would restrict the use of medication abortion drugs, The Oklahoman reports.

Oklahoma | In the Courts

This section provides a brief overview of significant cases impacting reproductive rights and health in Oklahoma.

Nova Health Systems v. Pruitt
Challenge to an Oklahoma law which prohibits a woman from getting an abortion unless she first has an ultrasound image and listens to her doctor describe the image in detail.

Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice v. Oklahoma State Board of Pharmacy
The Center for Reproductive Rights filed a suit in Oklahoma state court to block a provision in Oklahoma HB 2226 that would require women 17 and older to show identification to a pharmacist in order to obtain Plan B One-Step and generic emergency contraceptives and requiring those under 17 to have a prescription to obtain them.

Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice v. Terry Cline
Challenge to an Oklahoma law that would impose severe restrictions on use of mifepristone for medication abortion.

Planned Parenthood of Arkansas and Eastern Oklahoma v. Cline
Challenge in federal court to Oklahoma Department of Health decision to exclude Planned Parenthood from the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program, which provides food and resources to low-income pregnant women, new mothers, and children.