Columbus: In a bid to promote the lives of people with Down syndrome as lives worth living, a law has been introduced in Ohio that bans doctors from performing abortions based on the diagnosis of the lifelong genetic condition.
Republican Governor John Kasich signed a bill, which states that the law prohibits abortions after prenatal tests reveal Down syndrome in a fetus or if there’s “any other reason to believe” the fetus has the genetic condition.
A doctor performing an abortion in such a case could face a fourth-degree felony charge and physicians could lose their licenses.
However, there is no punishment for the women.
The law would come into effect in 90 days.
Press secretary Jon Keeling said that the governor is pro-life and supports policies that protect the sanctity of life, reports CNN.
The North Dakota law went into effect in 2013.
Down syndrome is a genetic condition that affects cognitive ability, causing mild to severe learning disabilities and distinctive facial characteristics. The condition can be diagnosed during pregnancy through prenatal screening tests.
Treatment can include speech, occupational, emotional and other therapies; supplements and drugs; and assistive devices.
Praising the new anti-abortion law, Mike Gonidakis, President of Ohio Right to Life said that the Down Syndrome Non-Discrimination Act is law, unborn babies prenatally diagnosed with Down syndrome are given a shot at life.