Texas Medical Board Notice of Proposed Rule Amendments and Statement Regarding Abortion Ban Exceptions

The Texas Medical Board (TMB) is proposing new rules to clarify how the state’s abortion ban exceptions apply to its enforcement process. This marks the beginning of a rulemaking process that will invite public participation and written comment.

The proposed rules, according to the TMB, are designed within the limits of existing laws to clarify the criteria the Board will consider if it receives a related complaint. The Board emphasizes that it does not have the authority to change or create new definitions in existing laws, nor does it have the power to regulate or prohibit abortion.

The Board is cautious about specifying particular conditions or scenarios that would qualify as exceptions. It recognizes the individuality of each patient and the complexity of medical practice, asserting that it is impractical and impossible to create a comprehensive list of situations that may arise in any given patient scenario.

The Board stresses the importance of “reasonable medical judgment,” which depends entirely on the patient’s unique circumstances and the expertise of the treating physician. Even if there were a list of conditions, it would not be enforceable without going through the standard process, given the varying impact of the same condition on different patients.