In accordance with ACT 411, no person shall perform or induce an abortion unless that person is a physician licensed to practice medicine in the state of Louisiana. Any outpatient abortion facility that fails to adhere to this law is subject to having its license denied, non-renewed, or revoked by the Department in accord with R.S. 40:2175.6.
Additionally, all licensed outpatient abortion facilities, defined by R.S. 40:2175.3, must post a sign in the patient admission area, waiting room and patient consulting room outlining women's rights and available pregnancy resources. The Louisiana Department of Health will provided the sign, entitled "Notice: Women's Rights and Pregnancy Resources," at no cost to providers. To order signage, click here.
- You can't be forced. It is unlawful for anyone to make you have an abortion against your will, even if you are a minor.
- You and the father. The father of your child must provide support of the child, even if he has offered to pay for an abortion.
- You and adoption. The law allows adoptive parents to pay costs of prenatal care, childbirth and newborn care.
- You are not alone. Many agencies are willing to help you carry your child to term, and to assist after your child's birth.
The Louisiana Children's Code, Article 610 D mandated individuals in certain occupations to report suspected cases of the abuse. Individuals in the following professions are considered mandated reporters:
- "Health practitioner" is any individual who provides health care services, including a physician, surgeon, physical therapist, dentist, resident, intern, hospital staff member, podiatrist, chiropractor, licensed nurse, nursing aide, dental hygienist, any emergency medical technician, a paramedic, optometrist, medical examiner, or coroner, who diagnoses, examines, or treats a child or his family.
- "Mental health/social service practitioner" is any individual who provides mental health care or social service diagnosis, assessment, counseling, or treatment, including a psychiatrist, psychologist, marriage or family counselor, social worker, member of the clergy, aide, or other individual who provides counseling services to a child or his family.
- "Member of the clergy" is any priest, rabbi, duly ordained clerical deacon or minister, Christian Science practitioner, or other similarly situated functionary of a religious organization, unless the information of abuse/neglect is learned in a confidential communication.
- "Teaching or child care provider" is any person who provides training and supervision of a child, including any public or private teacher, teacher's aide, instructional aide, school principal, school staff member, social worker, probation officer, foster home parent, group home or other child care institutional staff member, personnel of residential home facilities, a licensed or unlicensed day care provider, or any individual who provides such services to a child.
- Police officers or law enforcement officials.
- "Commercial film and photographic print processor" is any person who develops exposed photographic film into negatives, slides, or prints, or who makes prints from negatives or slides for compensation.
- Mediators appointed pursuant to Chapter 6 of Title IV, of the Louisiana Children's Code for mediation in juvenile court cases.
Physicians have an added responsibility when it comes to reporting cases of potential abuse or neglect. In accordance with Children's Code Article 603(16.1), prenatal neglect means "the unlawful use by a mother during pregnancy of a controlled dangerous substance, as defined by R.S. 40:961 et seq., which results in symptoms of withdrawal in the infant or the presence of a controlled substance in the infant's body."
Physicians are required to report instances of prenatal neglect to the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) by calling 855-4LA-KIDS (855-452-5437). The call is free and operates 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.