Fiedler, Hanbidge celebrate signing of Pelvic Exam Consent bill

HARRISBURG, Nov. 27 – Today, state Reps. Elizabeth Fiedler, D-Phila., and Liz Hanbidge, D-Montgomery, joined Gov. Josh Shapiro for the ceremonial signing of H.B. 507, which requires medical facilities in Pennsylvania to obtain consent before performing pelvic, prostate or rectal exams on anesthetized patients.

The bill was officially signed into law on Nov. 21 by Shapiro as Act 31 of 2023.

"Patients in Pennsylvania will finally have the right to make decisions about exams performed on their bodies while under anesthesia. This legislation ensures informed consent for invasive pelvic and rectal exams, at last giving patients the decision-making power that we all deserve about our own bodies,” Fiedler said. “I’m grateful to my colleague, Representative Hanbidge, for her work on this bill, and I thank Governor Shapiro for signing it into law.”

“Performing a pelvic, rectal or prostate exam unknowingly on an anesthetized patient isn’t only invasive, but it’s also a breach of trust. Our legislation abolishes this archaic practice, thereby strengthening the trust that Pennsylvanians have in medical professionals, protecting bodily autonomy and highlighting the importance of consent,” Hanbidge said. “Patients expecting to go under anesthesia should never have to worry about being objectified for ‘learning purposes,’ and now thanks to my co-sponsor Representative Fiedler, Senator Maria Collett, Senator Katie Muth, our colleagues in the legislature, and Governor Shapiro, they won’t have to.”