Judge Rules Kentucky Ultrasound Requirement ‘Harms Psychological Well-Being’ of Abortive Mothers


A federal judge has struck down a Kentucky law that requires women to obtain an ultrasound prior to an abortion, asserting that mandating mothers to look at the children that they are about to kill “appears to inflict psychological harm on abortion patients.”

“Requiring physicians to force upon their patients the information mandated by H.B. 2 has more potential to harm the psychological well-being of the patient than to further the legitimate interests of the Commonwealth,” wrote Judge David Hale, appointed to the bench by then-President Barack Obama.

He said that court testimony showed that some women exhibited signs of distress after seeing their baby and/or hearing the child’s heartbeat.

“Most patients choose to look away from the ultrasound image. But although they may attempt to avoid listening to the fetal heartbeat and ultrasound description, it is impossible for patients to entirely drown out the sounds. During the process mandated by H.B. 2, patients are ‘very upset,’ ‘crying,’ and even ‘sobbing,’” Hale wrote.

He opined that it can be especially hard on women who were raped or choose an abortion due to fetal anomaly.