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New Oklahoma Law Says Couples Must Be Tested For STD’s Before Marriage

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By: Patrice Johnson

Oklahoma couples who are looking to tie the knot may have a huge dilemma in their relationships before they can experience any possible marital bliss.

Under a proposed bill introduced in Oklahoma, now couples who want to marry are required to prove that they do not have any sexually transmitted infections before they’re allowed to walk down the aisle and say, “I do.”

Senate Bill 733, which was introduced by Sen. Anthony Sykes (R), stipulates that the “State Board of Health shall require a blood test for the discovery of syphilis and any other communicable or infectious diseases prior to the issuance of a marriage license.” In order for anyone to obtain a license they must first submit a certificate from a licensed physician which confirms that neither party, whether male or female, is infected with a disease that “may be communicable to the marriage partner.”
According to the bill currently, if either partner tests positive, they may not be permitted to get married.

Some colleagues of Sykes are supportive of this bill because they believe that it will help to ensure that people will know their STD status. “We have to look at that as a society whether we want people who have communicable diseases, they need to know if they have it, and I think this is a mechanism to provide them to do that,” says Sen. Kyle Loveless (R), who took out time to acknowledge that the legislation does need some tweaks.

However, legal experts of Oklahoma are concerned that the legislation would go too far by infringing on Americans’ private medical information, which is supposed to be protected at all time under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).

Once couples do submit this information to the clerk before getting married it will then become public information.

What do you guys think? Too far or fair? Do you think that this is too much of an invasion of privacy or a message to people to just be careful?


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