Judge Strikes Down Louisiana Law Requiring Abortionists to Have Admitting Privileges to Protect Women

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Apr 27, 2017   |   5:31PM   |   Baton Rouge, LA

Another federal judge struck down a state law Wednesday that required abortion doctors to have hospital admitting privileges for patient emergencies, this time in Louisiana.

The news comes just a week after a federal judge in Missouri blocked a similar law in that state.

U.S. District Judge John deGravelles struck down the 2014 Louisiana law on Wednesday, according to the Associated Press. In his decision, he cited a U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down a similar Texas law in 2016.

deGravelles claimed the law did not protect women’s health, and would have increased “the risk of harm to women’s health by dramatically reducing the availability of safe abortion in Louisiana.”

Abortion activists who challenged the law said it would have closed two of the three abortion facilities in the state.

The judge wrote that there was no evidence in Louisiana “that complications from abortion were being treated improperly, nor any evidence that any negative outcomes could have been avoided if the abortion provider had admitting privileges at a local hospital.”

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A spokeswoman for the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office said they are considering whether to appeal.

A legal battle over the law has been in progress for more than a year. In early 2016, deGravelles blocked the law, declaring it “unconstitutional,” but a federal appeals court reversed his decision on appeal, LifeNews reported.

The Center for Reproductive Rights and the Louisiana abortion centers behind the lawsuit previously indicated they would appeal to the Supreme Court, if necessary.

Louisiana Right to Life Executive Director Ben Clapper previously told LifeNews: “Not surprisingly, the abortion industry has filed suit to stop the common-sense standards put in place by HB 388. We believe it is the right of the state of Louisiana to close loopholes that allow abortion facilities to operate at a lower standard as compared to other surgical facilities.”

The Texas law that the U.S. Supreme Court struck down last year was responsible for closing abortion clinics that could not guarantee they could protect the health of Texas women. It has been credited with saving the lives of more than 10,000 unborn children.

Abortion activists now are using the precedent set in the Supreme Court decision to strike down other abortion regulations across the country. These regulations helped to ensure abortion facilities were meeting basic health and safety standards, and saved lives.