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One small step forward: Texas will require aborted fetuses to be buried or cremated

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Aborted fetuses in Texas that would normally be treated as medical waste will have to be buried or cremated starting next month.

The new rules, initially proposed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott, will require all health care facilities in the state to bury or incinerate the fetuses immediately after an abortion has taken place. Incinerated remains must then be scattered or buried.

Previously, health care facilities could dispose of fetuses in sanitary landfills, as is the common practice for disposal of medical waste across the country.

“Since abortion clinics have been open and operating in the United States, there have been protocols in place for how to deal with the products of conception, or the fetus,” Elizabeth Nash, senior state issues manager with the Guttmacher Institute, a policy and research organization that focuses on reproductive rights, told HuffPost earlier this month. “Typically, what has been required is that the products of conception be treated as any other tissue from the body. So, as medical waste.”

In a fundraising email sent by Abbott in July, the governor argued that he wanted to pass the new measures to “reflect our respect for the sanctity of life” and “turn the tides against the soulless abortion industry in Texas.” Abbott’s fundraising letter came shortly after Texas suffered a bruising loss in a Supreme Court casethat declared a different set of abortion-related regulations unconstitutional.

The proposal set off a firestorm of debate, with more than 35,000 comments submitted to health officials before the ruling, according to The Washington Post.

Read more. 

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