TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ A bill giving more legal protection to Kansas health care providers who refuse to participate in abortions is on its way to Gov. Sam Brownback.
The Senate approved the so-called ``conscience'' measure on a 23-16 vote Wednesday. The House passed the measure last month and is expected to be signed by Brownback, who strongly opposes abortion.
Kansas law already says doctors and hospitals can't be penalized for refusing to participate in abortions or sterilizations.
This year's bill extends the protection to other health care providers. It also covers refusal to prescribe abortion-inducing drugs or to refer patients to providers to terminate pregnancies.
Critics worry the legislation is broad enough to restrict access to birth control.
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