Planned Parenthood: it's tough to get an abortion in rural areas, new bill makes it harder

Thursday, the House Resources Committee voted 12 to 9 to advance the fetal heartbeat bill.

Iowa’s controversial fetal heartbeat bill is advancing.

Thursday, the House Resources Committee voted 12 to 9 to advance the bill, with one amendment.

The legislation would ban abortions as soon as a heartbeat is detected though an abdominal ultrasound. That could be a soon as six-weeks. But, what it won’t do is file felony charges for doctors who perform these abortions.

Planned Parenthood of the Heartland Communications Manager Becca Lee says most women don’t even realize they’re pregnant at six weeks.

On top of that, abortion clinics and places like Planned Parenthood are hard to find in rural areas, like much of Southeast Iowa.

Lee says getting to a safe place is hard enough, but if this bill passes it would just add even more restrictions.

“If she finds out that she’s pregnant early on, if she can get to a provider before the six-week mark, then maybe – there’s .05 percent chance – that she can access a safe legal abortion. But, the reality is that’s not the situation for most pregnant people," said Lee.

This abortion bill will now face the House floor for a vote. If it passes, it’ll move on to the Senate.

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