Current federal law recognizes all born infants as “persons.” However, it does not protect them completely. The federal Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act would require that proper medical care be given to an infant born alive following an abortion procedure.

Some question the necessity of this bill since the passage of the Born Alive Infants Protection Act in 2002. However, the 2002 Born Alive Infants Protection Act states that any child that survives an abortion is a person with full citizenship and is required to receive equal protection under federal law. That’s important, but there are virtually no penalties for anyone who breaks the law. Furthermore, it does not mandate what kind of treatment abortion survivors should receive, so it really only protects abortion survivors in theory.

The Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act fixes this by requiring healthcare providers to “exercise the same degree of care as reasonably provided to any other child born alive at the same gestational age,” and to transport the child to the hospital. There are also penalties incurred for abortionists who fail to do this, including criminal fines and prison time. It is important to note that the woman receiving the abortion is not eligible for prosecution, and she can even sue the guilty party for damages.

The USCCB shares Key Reasons for Passing the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.

In that state of Ohio, Senate Bill 208: The Born Alive After Abortion Infant Protection Act has passed the Senate. The bill, sponsored by Senator Terry Johnson, would prohibit providers from taking the life or ignoring the health needs of a baby born during an abortion procedure. The provider would also be required to call emergency services, keep the baby alive, and transfer the baby to a hospital for continued care. The next step is for the Ohio House to vote on the bill.