Bill to federally protect IVF access heads to Senate floor

NOW: Bill to federally protect IVF access heads to Senate floor

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) --- This week a bill aimed at protecting access to in-vitro fertilization (IVF) heads to the Senate floor.
This all stems from last week's Alabama Supreme Court decision ruling that frozen embryos should be considered children. Now, some lawmakers are working on legislation to protect IVF care.

"Since Roe was overturned a year and a half ago, it seems that we've come together countless times to say the same thing. Leave women alone," said U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin.

Baldwin is supporting an effort from U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) to federally protect IVF care after the Alabama ruling caused some fertility clinics to halt service while they sort through possible legal implications of the court's decision.

Baldwin says the overturning of Roe v. Wade paved the way for this to happen. "In my home state of Wisconsin, I heard stories of women bleeding out from complete miscarriages or being forced to travel across state lines for basic care," she said from a press conference in D.C. Tuesday.

Some worry that treating a frozen fertilized egg as the legal equivalent to a child could limit the availability of fertility care. The Access to Family Building Act hopes to prevent that. It was originally introduced back in 2022 but is now being brought back to the floor.

The legislation hopes to protect patients' authority over how sperm or egg cells are used during their fertility treatments. "One in four married women have difficulty getting pregnant or carrying a pregnancy to in four, that doesn't even include single women," said Duckworth who had both of her children via IVF.

"After a decade of struggle with infertility post my service in Iraq, I was only able to get pregnant through IVF," she said.

The Access to Family Building Act has yet to gain a thumbs up from any republican but republicans like former President Donald Trump have voiced support for IVF treatments, saying in an online post "…we want to make it easier for mothers and fathers to have babies, not harder."

His republican contender Nikki Haley initially said she supported the Alabama ruling but then walked those comments back.

Despite Trump's current stance on the issue the Democratic National Committee has launched a billboard campaign calling out Trump for his past stance on reproductive freedom.

The issue hits the senate floor Wednesday.

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