ABORTION LAWS & STATISTICS
Abortion is legal in Massachusetts. The recently-enacted Act providing for access to reproductive health services revised the standards at which an abortion may be performed depending on gestational duration to reflect the following:
1) for a pregnancy at less than 24 weeks, a physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner may perform an abortion consistent with the clinician’s scope and practice and license; and
2) for a pregnancy at 24 weeks or later, only a physician may perform an abortion and only if in the physician’s best medical judgment a) it is necessary to preserve the patient’s physical or mental health or b) an abortion is warranted because of a lethal fetal anomaly or the fetus is incompatible with sustained life outside the uterus.
An Act providing for access to reproductive health services also provided that a person 16 years or older may consent to an abortion, but that a person younger than 16 years of age must obtain the consent of at least one parent or guardian or seek a judicial bypass. The Act lowered the age to 16 from 18.