Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Campfield Targets Women?

What could be the point behind Knoxville's State Representative Stacey Campfield's proposed bill to require death certificates for abortions performed in Tennessee?

Campfield says in the KNS report:

All these people who say they are pro-life - at least we would see how many lives are being ended out there by abortions," Campfield said. ..."Hopefully we'll be able to get a little information out of this."

The effort here seems geared to gaining information - the private information of patients who have the procedure. And the statistics on all procedures are already provided to the state.

Tennessee law already requires abortions to be reported to the Office of Vital Records, though the identities of women having abortions are not included in the reports. Death certificates require identifying information like Social Security numbers."

Why not some legislation to require that the men who are the partners in the creation of a pregnancy be identified? Is Campfield, who often files divisive and headline-grabbing legislation, trying to isolate women as potential criminals?

Personally, I see little point in Campfield's actions other than stirring up the emotions of emotional voters and getting media attention for himself. In that job, he is usually successful.


  1. Since an abortion is a medical procedure, I think HIPAA would come into play when Campfield tries to get information on who is having abortions. I personally would LOVE to see him denied access to info, but would more enjoy seeing a more moderate, thoughtful approach to government than what we have seen in the recent past.

  2. >>>Since an abortion is a medical procedure, I think HIPAA would come into play when Campfield tries to get information on who is having abortions

    HIPAA doesn't apply to death certificates, snitka.

    That's the point. You would do a public records search for "cause of death" = "abortion" and cull all of the information for next of kin.

    What you would do with that information? Harass women who've had the procedure.

    And I don't think clinic defense laws apply to someone's residence. At least not now.

  3. andy,

    HIPAA may not apply to death certificates, but in order to comply with HIPAA, certain identifying information would need to be redacted. Otherwise, the death certificate would provide information about a medical procedure to a non-interested third party.

  4. I agree with snikta, as a health care professional , HIPAA would definitely step in to protect the patient as this would violate the privacy of the patient.

  5. Thanks, dee. This is pretty much uncharted waters as far as HIPAA goes. It's an interesting question, though.