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Maryland ‘Keep Our Hearts Beating Act’ (SB 1008)

This law was last updated on Apr 17, 2019

This law is Anti–Choice




SB 1008


Failed to Pass


Feb 25, 2019


Co-sponsors: 10
Primary Sponsors: 1
Total Sponsors: 11


Heartbeat Bans

Full Bill Text

SB 1008 would prohibit a physician from performing or inducing an abortion on a pregnant person if it has been determined that the fetus has a detectable heartbeat.

A fetal heartbeat can be detected as early as six weeks of pregnancy—two weeks after a person’s first missed period—and well before many even realize that they are pregnant.

The bill would require a physician to first determine whether the fetus the pregnant person is carrying has a detectable heartbeat. The bill requires the physician to use a method to detect the fetal heartbeat that is “consistent with the standard of care.”

A physician would be able to perform an abortion only in cases of medical emergency or if it has been determined that there is no detectable heartbeat.

A person who violates this provision would be guilty of a felony and subject to up to one year in prison, a fine, and disciplinary action.


A physician who attempts to detect a fetal heartbeat would need to include the following in the patient’s medical record:

  • The method used to detect the heartbeat;
  • The approximate gestational age of the fetus; and
  • Whether a fetal heartbeat was detected.

A person who violates this provision would be guilty of a misdemeanor—punishable by up to six months in prison and/or a $1,000 fine.

The bill would repeal certain provisions of law which prohibit the state from interfering with the decision of an individual to terminate a pregnancy before the fetus is viable; or any time during a pregnancy if it’s necessary to protect the pregnant person’s life or the fetus has a serious abnormality.

Related Legislation

Companion bill to HB 978.

Similar to HB 933 and HB 1195.

Latest Action

2/25/19 – Introduced; referred to Senate Rules Committee.