Indiana Defunding Law Caused Doctors to Stop Performing Medically Necessary Abortions


The Indiana law that was supposed to “defund Planned Parenthood” may be on hold while a judge rules on it, but some consequences were already seen in the state.  According to Indiana news outlets, some doctors confused by the murky language of the law stopped performing abortions all together, even for women who had non-viable fetuses or who’s health were in danger, afraid that any abortion could put their ability to assist women on Medicaid at risk.

Via the Indystar:

Since the law took effect six weeks ago, The Star has learned, doctors at IU and Wishard hospitals stopped offering to terminate pregnancies for about 70 patients, including many with complications that put the patient’s health at serious risk or where there was no possibility the fetus would survive. The IU School of Medicine’s faculty practice determined that its doctors had to take that step to comply with the law, despite the fact that the law exempts hospitals.

The IU doctors are part of a private practice not technically employed by the hospitals, and therefore they do not fit under the language of the exemption.

These doctors — and likely many others — had to choose from a limited range of treatment options or send patients out of state for terminations after the law took effect May 10.

The law was aimed at cutting off Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood of Indiana. But the IU doctors feared that if they continued to terminate pregnancies — even in cases where it was medically advisable — they would also lose the ability to treat Medicaid clients, who make up a substantial portion of their cases.

Republican response?  “That was not the intent…if something needs to be fixed, we’ll look at it.”

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