Settlement on Abortion Lawsuit Reached

April 11, 2001

Michigan Department of Community Health Director, James K. Haveman, Jr., today announced that the Department has reached a partial settlement with the Center for Reproductive Law and Policy over a misinterpretation of Michigan's informed consent for abortion legislation.

"I am pleased that this partial settlement has been reached, so we can eliminate any confusion regarding Michigan's informed consent for abortion legislation," said Haveman. "Contrary to what was alleged in the lawsuit, Michigan never tried to ban the use of RU-486 or surgical procedures for abortion. Our goal has always been, and continues to be, ensuring women have access to accurate and factually correct information before undergoing an abortion."

Michigan's informed consent for abortion legislation ensures that women seeking an abortion receive factual statutorily required written materials about abortion procedures, development of the human fetus, prenatal care and parenting at least 24-hours prior to an abortion procedure.

"Basically, what this settlement does is reiterate what the legislature enacted with PA 345 of 2000 and PA 133 of 1993," said Haveman. "With this settlement, the Department of Community Health is now able to move forward with our plans to implement the state web site which will allow women to have Internet access to this important information."

The Department of Community Health is currently developing materials regarding the use of RU-486 that will be included in the informed consent for abortion information. The Department is also developing the state web site that will provide the informed consent for abortion information.

The issue that remains to be settled between the parties focuses on payment issues between patients and abortion providers.