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Oklamhoma Law Would Require Couples To Take STD Tests Before Getting Married

Oklahoma couples looking to get married may soon be faced with an invasive requirement before they can legally say their “I Dos.”

via Think Progress

Under a proposed bill introduced in Oklahoma, couples in the state who want to get married would be required to prove they don’t have any sexually transmitted infections before they’re allowed to say “I do.”

Senate Bill 733, introduced by Oklahoma Sen. Anthony Sykes (R), stipulates that “the State Board of Health shall require a blood test for the discovery of syphilis and other communicable or infectious diseases prior to the issuance of a marriage license.” In order to obtain the license, the couple would need to submit a certificate or affidavit from a licensed physician that confirms neither of them are infected with a disease that “may be communicable to the marriage partner.”

As the bill is currently written, if either partner tests positive, they may not be permitted to get married.

Some of Sykes’ colleagues support the legislation because they believe it will help ensure that people 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,” Sen. Kyle Loveless (R), who acknowledged the legislation likely needs some tweaks, told NEWS 9.

Legal experts in the state are concerned that the legislation would go too far to infringe on Americans’ private medical information, which is supposed to be protected under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). If people are required to file these documents with the court clerk before getting married, the results of their STD test would become public information.

Hmmmmm. What are your thoughts on this law? Is legally requiring couples to test negative for STDs before marriage fair? Or should it be left up to the two people getting married to decide whether or not they’d like to ensure that their partner is STD-free? Let’s discuss.



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