Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Teen safe-sex laws cost Texas $44 million a year - Teen safe-sex laws cost $44 million a year: "Two laws in Texas that limit teenagers' ability to confidentially obtain reproductive health care cost $44 million a year largely because of additional pregnancies, local researchers have found. The laws were passed by the Texas Legislature in 1999 but only recently enforced. One requires teens younger than 18 to obtain parental consent before receiving prescription contraceptives, and the other requires health care providers to report to law enforcement agencies the identity of patients younger than 17 who they think are sexually active."

How wrong is it that Texas passed a law that doctors must inform on their minor patients that they believe are sexually-active? How is it positive to encourage teenage girls (how do you tell that teenage boys are sexually-active?) to lie to their doctors or not see a doctor at all? One positive note not reflected in this excerpt is that any clinic that receives federal funds must abide by federal patient privacy laws, making them exempt from these ridiculous laws. Unfortunately there are Texas cities that have few or no federally-funded clinics.



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