Written Testimony of Dr. Tara Sander Lee on South Dakota’s HB 1110 to Prohibit Abortions due to Down Syndrome

Tara Sander Lee, Ph.D.  

On March 1, 2021, the South Dakota Senate Health and Human Services Committee heard a bill introduced by Governor Kristi Noem that would prohibit the performance of abortions due to Down syndrome. HB 1110 has now passed the House of Representatives and the Senate with unanimous votes, and was delivered to the Governor’s desk earlier this week. CLI Senior Fellow and Director of Life Sciences Dr. Tara Sander Lee testified on HB 1110, noting her scientific and clinical experience spanning 20 years, which includes expertise in molecular genetics and diagnostic testing. Dr. Sander Lee provided information on: the incidence of Down syndrome in the United States, methods of prenatal screening and testing, the high false-positive rate of incorrect reporting in standard screening tests, limitations with newer methods of non-invasive prenatal screening (NIPS or NIPT), and the “perinatal revolution” of significant medical advancements including fetal surgeries to heal babies in utero.


Dr. Sander Lee stated, “Eliminating young lives is not the answer to eliminating disease and disability once a risk of the disorder is identified. Destroying the patient is not curative medicine. Such acts become a modern-day form of eugenics.”


The full text of the testimony can be accessed online here:  Full testimony


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