Aug 30, 2022 - Health

Health providers announce lawsuit to challenge Indiana's abortion ban

Abortion-rights protesters chant during a session of the Indiana state Senate at the Capitol on July 25 in Indianapolis. Photo: Jon Cherry/Getty Images

Planned Parenthood and other health care providers on Tuesday said they had filed a lawsuit challenging an abortion ban in Indiana that is set to take effect in approximately two weeks.

Driving the news: The Indiana legislature passed the bill earlier this month, making it the first state to pass a new ban since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.

  • Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) signed the bill into law shortly after it passed. It is scheduled to become enforceable on Sept. 15.

Details: Indiana's S.B. 1 makes abortion illegal, except in cases to "prevent any serious health risk" of a pregnant person, to save their life, if there's a "lethal fetal anomaly," or if the pregnancy is a result of rape or incest.

  • It also "terminates the licensure of abortion clinics" so that abortions can only be performed in hospitals.
  • Health providers who perform an illegal abortion could lose their medical license and potentially be found guilty of feticide.

State of play: The lawsuit — filed by Planned Parenthood Federation of America and others — "argues the abortion ban violates both the Indiana Constitution’s right to privacy and equal privileges protections," the groups said in a press release.

What they're saying: "Unless this ban is blocked, patients seeking abortion will be unable to access timely and potentially life-saving care in their own communities. The abortion ban that the legislature rushed through during a special session ... is both dangerous and incredibly cruel," said Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

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