Arizona's contraception law: A case of 'legislative malpractice'?

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," March 15, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Now to the scene of the latest new fight, the contraception fight, and this time it's the state of Arizona. As we told you last night, Arizona lawmakers are pushing a new bill that would permit employers to opt out of providing contraception coverage. Now Arizona Republicans want that opt out right extended to businesses, not just religious organizations.

Last night, we heard from Republican State Representative Debbie Lesko, and tonight the other side. Democratic State Representative Matt Heinz joins us. Nice to see you?

STATE REP. MATT HEINZ, M.D., D-ARIZ.: Thanks, Greta. It's great to be here.

VAN SUSTEREN: I understand you're described -- you are a doctor?

HEINZ: I am.

VAN SUSTEREN: So you call this legislation malpractice. Explain that.

HEINZ: Greta, any time policymakers whether at the federal level or state level act in a way to take control of patient care from the doctors and do this through a policy such as the one that we're discussing, I think that does constitute a legislative malpractice.

VAN SUSTEREN: I take it doctors could still prescribe birth control, but the question is who pays for it. So it doesn't step on what the doctors do?

HEINZ: I think it really does. I think when you look at the way the law is written it specifically says that contraceptive medications prescribed by your health care provider, if they are for hormone therapy or any medical use, you actually have to show that to are non-medically trained employer, which means women in their situation, if they go and have a medical condition that requires hormone therapy not for contraception, have to reveal private personal information that they should be discussing only with their doctor to their untrained employer. And I think that is really not the role for big government.

VAN SUSTEREN: As I understand it, what we're talking about hormone therapy, and there are two uses, one is birth control and one is for other medical problems. Is that correct, aside from birth control, right?

HEINZ: There are many medical conditions that require hormone therapy.

VAN SUSTEREN: It's the same whether using for contraception or whether using for other medical problems.

HEINZ: That's right.

VAN SUSTEREN: So, if the law is written that it would only be used for other, not for birth control, and that private businesses didn't have to pay for it for contraception, would that be a problem for you?

HEINZ: I think that the fact that we are even discussing this is really disturbing to me. And the bill at its core doesn't address any problem. There is no new information in medical science that demonstrates there is any risk or any danger.

VAN SUSTEREN: I don't think it's the risk or danger. There are some people out there. I get the e-mails. Some people for religious reasons do not want to pay birth control in insurance. I'm trying to figure out, in light of the fact that hormonal therapy can have medical uses beyond birth control, I'm trying to figure out a solution to stop the fight and figure out you as a doctor can continue to treat the medical conditions and women can receive it. and those that don't want to provide insurance with contraception, they don't have to, but you can still prescribe it for birth control for contraception and it's just that the person will have to pay for it. That's where we are, right?

HEINZ: It seems to be. But remember, there is current law in Arizona, there is a protection for women in circumstances where they need to go outside of their employer to get contraceptive medication or pay for it themselves, there is a protection against discrimination are being fired in statute. This measure that is about to pass the Senate, I fear, actually strips out that protection, so women who do the responsible thing, find another source or another way to pay for their prescription contraception, end up being at risk for being discriminated against and fired from their position.

VAN SUSTEREN: I'm not sure if I follow that. But what about the cost in Arizona? You might not know, but if you don't get insurance pay for it for birth control pills, do you have any idea?

HEINZ: It could be as low as mid hundreds and as high as thousands because the cheapest generic birth control has the most complications for women and they tend not to be able to tolerate it.

One more other thing I think it's important to point out, the sponsors of this bill talk about religious freedom and, quote, the "First Amendment." I think it's very important to point out that the individual religious freedom applies to those employees who could be affected by this, not just the employer. So I don't see that it's fair or proper for the state of Arizona to say that an employer's right to religious freedom of expression should be imposed on or trump individuals.

VAN SUSTEREN: I don't know if I follow that. But there is no question that it's in the constitution, religious freedom and the question whether the state is requiring someone to violate his religious beliefs or not. And I think this is one of these arguments there is a good smart way so everyone can work it out where we don't step on people's religious rights.

But anyway, we'll leave it for another day. Nice to talk to you, sir.

HEINZ: Thank you, Greta. Good to be here.