In another victory for moms and unborn babies, a Missouri judge refused to block a regulation Monday that requires abortion facilities to have a doctor available to treat women who experience emergency complications from drug-induced abortions.
KCUR radio news reports U.S. District Judge Beth Phillips said Planned Parenthood failed to show how the regulation is “a substantial burden to a large fraction of women seeking a medication abortion.”
Though the court case is not over, Phillips’ ruling is bad news for the top abortion chain in America.
In 2017, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services began requiring abortion facilities that provide medication abortions to have a contract with an OBGYN who has hospital admitting privileges, the purpose being that a doctor is always available to treat an abortion patient in emergency situations.
Two Planned Parenthood affiliates in Missouri challenged the law and asked Phillips to block it until a final ruling is made. According to the report, the abortion chain has not been able to comply with the regulation at its Columbia and Springfield abortion facilities.
Samuel H. Lee, of Campaign Life Missouri, praised the ruling in a statement Tuesday.
“Despite all of the efforts of the abortion industry to avoid complying with commonsense health and safety regulations, one federal judge has sensibly determined that helping women victimized by serious drug-induced complications is more important than the ‘inconvenience’ to traveling abortion doctors who are required to retain a local backup OB/GYN to fix their mistakes,” Lee said.
Lee also thanked Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley and his legal team for defending the law.
Here’s more from the report:
The state offered several justifications for the requirement, saying it increased the accuracy of diagnoses; helped the state accurately track complications arising from medication abortions; ensured the availability of a medical professional who could perform a vacuum aspiration – a suction procedure – in the event of an incomplete or failed abortion; and helped minimize referrals to emergency rooms.
Phillips found none of those justifications convincing. But she said she was obliged to weigh the regulation’s benefits against its burdens, and she found the burdens weren’t sufficient to warrant the regulation being blocked.
“It is not enough for the regulation to make it more difficult for women to obtain an abortion; instead it must be a substantial burden on their ability to obtain an abortion,” Phillips wrote.
This is the second victory in a month for pro-life advocates and the women and children they are seeking to protect. In May, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear a very similar case out of Arkansas, a decision that allowed the law to stand. Two Arkansas abortion facilities may close as a result.
The abortion drug RU-486 has a high complication rate and can be deadly to the mother as well as her unborn baby if complications are not treated. According to the FDA, at least 14 women have died and 2,207 women have been injured by the drug in America.