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State Laws

Nevada


Political Information

Executive (Governor)

Mixed-choice

Legislative

Mixed-choice

Abortion-Care Policies

Abortion Providers

Abortion Providers: Restrictions

Nevada imposes extra restrictions on abortion providers, despite the fact that all health-care providers already must comply with a variety of federal and state regulations governing health, safety, building and fire codes, and zoning requirements.  

Restrictions on Where Abortion Services May Be Provided

Nevada places medically unnecessary restrictions on where abortion services may be performed.

Among the most common TRAP regulations are those restricting the provision of abortion services to hospitals or other specialized facilities, which require doctors to obtain medically unnecessary additional licenses, needlessly convert their practices to mini-hospitals at great expense, or provide abortion services only in hospitals, an impossibility in many parts of the country.

Nevada requires that an abortion provided either after the 24th week, or if there is a reasonable likelihood of the fetus surviving outside the woman’s body by natural or artificial support systems, must be provided in a licensed hospital. This requirement is despite the fact that doctors can provide such care safely in other properly equipped health facilities. Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 442.250.2 (Enacted 1973; Last Amended 1985).

Restrictions on Who May Provide Abortion Services

Nevada prohibits certain qualified health-care professionals from providing abortion services.

Only a physician licensed to practice in the state or employed by the U.S. government using accepted medical practices and procedures may provide abortion care. Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 442.250 (Enacted 1973; Last Amended 1985).


Abortion Rights

Protections: Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA)

Nevada has created additional protections for reproductive rights by adding an affirmative right to choose into its state law.  In 1973, Nevada enacted a law affirming a woman’s right to choose.  This law was amended several times and in its current form is consistent with the framework established in Roe v. Wade.  This law ensures women’s access to pre-viability abortion services and would remain in effect even if Roe v. Wade were overturned.

Abortion care may be provided within 24 weeks after the commencement of a pregnancy.  Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 442.250 (Enacted 1973; Last Amended 1985).  In November 1990, Nevada voters passed a ballot initiative approving this law, and as a result the statute will remain in effect and cannot be amended, repealed, or otherwise changed except by a direct vote of the people.  Nev. Question No. 7 (Enacted by Ballot Initiative 1990); Nev. Const. art.19, § 1(3).  


Post-Viability Ban

Nevada’s post-viability abortion restriction states that no abortion may be provided after the 24th week of pregnancy unless there is a "substantial risk" that continuance of the pregnancy would endanger the woman’s life or "gravely impair" her physical or mental health.  Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 442.250 (Enacted 1973; Last Amended 1985).

NARAL Pro-Choice America supports the legal framework established in Roe v. Wade and does not oppose restrictions on post-viability abortion so long as they contain adequate exceptions to protect the woman’s life and health.  NARAL Pro-Choice America opposes Nevada’s post-viability restriction because it contains a dangerously narrow health exception.  NARAL Pro-Choice America also opposes this law because it is unconstitutional to the extent that it prohibits pre-viability abortion by defining viability at 24 weeks.  A state may not prohibit abotion prior to viability, which is that point at which a fetus is capable of "meaningful life" outside a woman’s body.  Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, 163 (1973).  Because viability is a point that varies with each pregnancy, states may not declare that it occurs at a particular gestational age.  Colautti v. Franklin, 439 U.S. 379, 388-89 (1979).


Biased Counseling

No state measure.

Mandatory Delays

No state measure.

Insurance Coverage & Abortion

No state measure.

Low-Income Women & Abortion

Restricts Low-Income Women’s Access to Abortion

Nevada prohibits public funding of abortion for women eligible for state medical assistance for general health care unless the procedure is necessary to save the life of a pregnant woman, or the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest and the woman signs a notarized affidavit or witnessed declaration attesting to the rape or incest.  Div. of Health Care Financing & Policy, Nev. Dep’t of Human Resources, Medicaid Services Manual, ch. 600, § 603.4(2)(c) (July 2014), at https://dhcfp.nv.gov/MSM/CH0600/MSM%20CH%20600%20Packet%20(07-10-14).pdf.


Young Women & Abortion

Parental Notice

Nevada law restricts young women’s access to abortion.

Is the law enforceable?  No.  A federal court held that this law is unconstitutional and unenforceable because the judicial bypass-procedure does not sufficiently protect a woman’s right to choose. Glick v. McKay, 937 F.2d 434 (9th Cir. 1991) (preliminary injunction upheld), No. CV-N-85-331-ECR (D. Nev. Oct. 10, 1991) (permanent injunction issued).

Who is considered a minor?  A young woman under the age of 18 who is not married and not emancipated.

What is required – parental consent or parental notice?  Notice.

Who must be notified?  One parent.

Are there other trusted adults who may be notified instead?  No.

What is the process for providing notification?  A young woman may not obtain an abortion unless the attending physician personally gives notice to one parent.  If the parent cannot be so notified after a reasonable effort, notice must be made by certified mail.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman is a victim of rape or incest?  No.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman is a victim of child abuse?  No.

May the parental mandate be waived if a young woman’s health is threatened?  Yes, but only if the attending physician determines that "an abortion is immediately necessary to preserve the patient’s life or health."

May the parental mandate be waived under any other circumstances?  Yes, the young woman may try to obtain permission from a judge.

If a young woman must obtain permission from a judge, what is the process?  She must secure a court order stating that she is mature enough to make an intelligent and informed decision, that she is financially independent or emancipated, or that parental notice is detrimental to her best interests.

Are there other significant requirements under the law?  No.

Has a court considered the constitutionality of this law?  Yes.  A court held that the statute is unconstitutional because the judicial-bypass procedure is constitutionally inadequate and issued a permanent injunction prohibiting enforcement of the law.  Glick v. McKay, 937 F.2d 434 (9th Cir. 1991) (preliminary injunction upheld), No. CV-N-85-331-ECR (D. Nev. Oct. 10, 1991) (permanent injunction issued).

Other information about the law:  None.

Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 442.255 (Enacted 1981; Last Amended 1985), .2555 (Enacted 1985).


Family-Planning Policies

Insurance Coverage & Contraception

Supports Insurance Coverage of Contraception

Nevada law requires health-insurance plans that cover prescription medication to provide equitable coverage for contraception.

What is required? If a health-insurance plan provides coverage for prescription medication, devices or outpatient care, it must provide coverage for any Food and Drug Administration-approved contraception or any health-care service related to contraception.

To which insurance plans does the law apply? Individual and group insurance policies, hospital or medical service contracts, and health maintenance organization (HMO) policies issued or renewed on or after October 1, 1999 that provide coverage for prescription medication, devices or outpatient care.

Does the law provide additional protections for women? Yes. Insurers may not:  (1) impose a greater copayment, coinsurance, deductible, or waiting period than that imposed on other prescriptions or outpatient care; (2) refuse to issue or cancel a health-insurance policy because the prospective insured uses or may use contraception; (3) offer incentives to an insured or health-care provider to discourage the use of contraception; or (4) penalize a health-care provider for providing contraceptives.

Does the law contain a refusal clause, allowing certain employers and/or insurers to refuse to provide or pay for contraceptive coverage? Yes.

To whom does the refusal clause apply? Insurers that are affiliated with a religious organization and that object to contraception on religious grounds.

What does the refusal clause allow? An insurer that is affiliated with a religious organization and that objects to contraception on religious grounds may refuse to provide coverage for contraception.

Is this refusal clause overbroad, jeopardizing insurance coverage for contraception for women? Yes. The law permits insurers affiliated with religious organizations to refuse to provide contraceptive coverage. This broad refusal clause inappropriately includes insurers that operate in the public sphere.

Does the law require the refusing entity to notify the persons affected? Yes. An insurer exercising the religious exemption must provide written notice of the excluded services to the prospective insureds.

Are there circumstances under which a refusal clause may not be exercised? No.

Does the law provide a mechanism for women to obtain contraceptive coverage if their insurer exercises a refusal clause? No.

Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 689A.0415, .0417; §§ 689B.0376, .0377; §§ 695B.1916, .1918; §§ 695C.1694, .1695.  (Enacted 1999)


Low-Income Women & Contraception

No state measure.

Emergency Contraception

No state measure.

Other Important Issues

Clinic Protections

Clinic Protections

A person who intentionally blocks another person from entering or exiting a medical or health facility or the office of a physician by physical detention or obstruction is guilty of a misdemeanor and will be fined up to $1000, imprisoned for up to three months, or both. Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 449.760 (Enacted 1991).  


Crisis Pregnancy Centers

No state measure.

Refusals & Guarantees

Refusals of Medical Care

ABORTION REFUSAL CLAUSE

Nevada allows certain individuals or entities to refuse to provide abortion services.

To whom does the refusal clause apply? Nurses, nursing assistants, other employees hired to provide direct personal health services, or private hospitals, or licensed medical facilities.

What does the refusal clause allow? Except in a medical emergency, an employer may not require a nurse, nursing assistant, or other employee hired to provide direct personal health service to participate directly in abortion care if the employee has provided a written statement indicating a moral, ethical, or religious basis for refusal to participate. The refusal to participate may not be a basis for penalty or discipline by the employer.

A private hospital or licensed medical facility is not required to permit the use of its facilities for abortion care except in a medical emergency. The refusal to permit abortion care may not be a basis for a cause of action.

Must the refusal be in writing? Yes, an employee must provide a written statement indicating a moral, ethical, or religious basis for refusal to participate.

Does the law require the refusing entity to notify the persons affected? No.

Are there circumstances under which a refusal clause may not be exercised? Yes, during medical emergencies.

Does the law require the refusing individual or entity to provide medically and factually accurate information or provide a referral for abortion services? No.

Does the law provide a mechanism for women to otherwise obtain specific reproductive-health services, information, or referrals if an individual and/or entity exercises a refusal clause? No.

Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 632.475 (Enacted 1973; Last Amended 1989); Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 449.191 (Enacted 1973; Last Amended 1985).

INSURANCE COVERAGE FOR CONTRACEPTION REFUSAL CLAUSE

Although Nevada law requires health-insurance plans that cover prescription medication to provide equitable coverage for contraception, certain insurers may require that their plans exclude coverage for contraception.

To whom does the refusal clause apply?  Insurers that are affiliated with a religious organization and that object to contraceptive coverage on religious grounds.

What does the refusal clause allow? An insurer that is affiliated with a religious organization and that objects to contraceptive coverage on religious grounds may refuse to provide coverage for contraception.

Is this refusal clause overbroad, jeopardizing insurance coverage for contraception for women? Yes. The law permits insurers affiliated with religious organizations to refuse to provide contraceptive coverage. This broad refusal clause inappropriately includes insurers that operate in the public sphere.

Does the law require the refusing entity to notify the persons affected? Yes. An insurer exercising the religious exemption must provide written notice of the excluded services to the prospective insured.

Are there circumstances under which a refusal clause may not be exercised? No.

Does the law provide a mechanism for women to obtain contraceptive coverage if their employer exercises a refusal clause? No.

Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 689A.0415, .0417; §§ 689B.0376, .0377; §§ 695B.1916, .1918; §§ 695C.1694, .1695.  (Enacted 1999).


Guarantees Access to Prescriptions

Nevada law guarantees that women’s birth-control prescriptions will be filled.  A pharmacist may refuse to fill a prescription for professional reasons only.  Professional reasons for refusing include questions concerning the legitimacy or medical appropriateness of any prescription presented, or reasonable belief that the filling of the prescription would be unlawful.  Regulations specify that a pharmacist may not refuse to fill a prescription based on ethical, moral, or religious reasons.

Nev. Admin. Code § 639.753 (2006); Nev. State Board of Pharmacy News (Nev. St. Bd. of Pharmacy & Nat’l Ass’n of Bds. of Pharmacy Found., Inc., Mount Prospect, IL), NV Vol. 17, No. 3, July 2006, at 4.


Counseling & Referral Bans

No state measure.

Everyone should be able to decide if, when, how, and with whom they start or grow a family.

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