Senate tentatively approves bill to end “wrongful birth” cause of action

On the floor Monday, the Senate tentatively approved a bill that would remove the “wrongful birth” cause of action in the state.   SB 25 author and Conroe Senator Brandon Creighton describes this as a case where a doctor is sued for delivering a child with a disability.  He says the 40 year old law is archaic and sends the wrong message about people with disabilities in Texas.   “We should not coin a child born with a disability as an injury, we should not create that negative connotation and a physician should not be liable in any way because a child is simply born disabled, as long as that physician did everything in that standard of care that’s accepted,” said Creighton.

Opponents of the bill raised concerns that the bill might permit  a doctor who opposes abortion to withhold information about congenital anomalies that might make a mother decide to seek an abortion.  Creighton disagreed, saying that doctors would still be required under other statutes to meet existing standards of care and disclosure, and provide parents with adequate remedy for malpractice.  “If a physician omits critical information that a patient deserves, or directs a patient towards an outcome that is different than what the testing has shown, they are very much on the hook for malpractice, fraud, emotional distress, gross negligence and losing their license,” he said.

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