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Biden lifts abortion referral ban on family planning clinics | News – Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City, Missouri 2021-10-04 17:55:27 –

Washington (AP) — Monday’s Biden administration overturns family planning clinic ban on abortion referrals and lifts restrictions on the Trump era as political and legal battles over abortion intensify from Texas to the U.S. Supreme Court bottom.

The Ministry of Health and Social Welfare said the new regulation would return the federal family planning program to the way it was implemented under the Obama administration when the clinic was able to refer women seeking abortion to health care providers. The goal is to “strengthen and restore” services, said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra.

A group representing the clinic will restore some 1,300 local facilities left by the Biden administration’s actions in protest of Trump’s policies, stabilizing a long-standing program swayed by the coronavirus pandemic in addition to the idealistic battle. He said he hoped to help.

“I’ve heard that in almost every region of the country, we’ve determined that the conditions for returning to the program are good,” Claire Coleman, chairman of the National Family Planning and Reproductive Health Association, an affiliated group, said in an interview. “In my sense, people were waiting for the rules.”

Planned Parenthood, the largest service provider, said he was looking forward to the health center returning on Twitter. However, the group criticized some of the Biden administration rules that allowed individual clinicians who oppose abortion not to provide referrals. The administration said it was “in compliance with applicable federal law.”

A taxpayer-funded program, known as Title X, provides clinics with over $ 250 million annually to provide contraception and basic medical services primarily to low-income women in the minority community. .. Under former President Donald Trump, clinics were barred from referrals to patients for abortion, mass discharges by service providers related to planned parent-child relationships, and some states and other independent organizations. Prompted.

The women’s group called the Trump policy a “gag rule,” and medical institutions called it a breach of the clinician-patient relationship. However, religious and social conservatives praised the policy of strictly separating family planning services and abortion. Under federal law, clinics could not spend federal money to pay for abortions.

In 2018, the Family Planning Clinic served approximately 3.9 million clients, which HHS estimates has declined by nearly 40% after the Trump policy. Officials said the turmoil could have led to unintended pregnancies in more than 180,000 people. Overall, more than a quarter of clinics have left the program. While some states stepped up with their own unlinked funding, women in some parts of the country still lost access.

“This was a huge one-to-two punch for the system,” said Coleman, coupled with the disruption of service due to the COVID-19 shutdown.

Biden campaigned with a promise to overturn the restrictions of family planning clinics, but abortion was not a central issue in the 2020 presidential election. Determining who controls Congress could be one in the 2022 midterm elections.

Restrictive state laws, such as Texas and Mississippi, have encouraged the mobilization of abortion supporters who fear that the conservative Supreme Court will overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion. Hundreds of abortion-themed protests were held nationwide on Saturday, including those that took thousands of abortion supporters to court stairs.

The Supreme Court has allowed Texas law to come into force, but has not ruled on the substantive legal issues behind the law prohibiting most abortions in the state. Judges will hear the December 1st debate on the Mississippi Act, which bans most abortions after 15 weeks of gestation.

After Trump appointed three conservative judges, the court is now clearly leaning to the right. Twelve states have passed legislation banning abortion altogether if Roe capsizes.

“Given the attacks on abortion in Texas and across the country, it’s more important than ever for patients to have access to contraceptive and other health care options through Title X,” planned parent-child relationship president Alexis McGill. Johnson said in a statement.

The Family Planning Clinic’s new abortion referral policy will come into effect on November 8.


The Associated Press writer, David Crary, contributed to this report.

Copyright 2021 AP communication. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.

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