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Abortion Providers to File Second Suit Against HB 2

Challenging admitting privileges and ASC regulations
Jordan Smith, 1:34pm, Wed. Apr. 2
Illustration by Jason Stout

Days after an appeals court upheld two provisions of the controversial House Bill 2, abortion providers today said they will file a second lawsuit, again attacking the hospital admitting privileges provision, and lodging a new attack against the legality of a requirement that clinics comply with standards devised for surgical centers.

The suit, which has not yet been filed, will be done so by lawyers with the Center for Reproductive Rights on behalf of Whole Woman's Health, Abortion Advantage, Austin Women's Health Center, Killeen Women's Health Center, and a group of abortion-providing doctors – and will seek an immediate court order to block enforcement of the admitting-privileges provision as it applies to Whole Woman's Health in McAllen and Reproductive Health Services in El Paso.

The suit will also challenge the imposition on abortion clinics of regulations designed specifically for ambulatory surgical centers, which are in essence mini hospitals. The regulations, which advocates say are unnecessary and are extremely costly, are likely to put out of business all but a handful or Texas providers, leaving women living west of IH-35 without any meaningful access to legal abortion care.

The lawsuit will come less than one week after a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals concluded that the hospital admitting privileges portion of the law is constitutional, affirming their earlier position that forcing women to travel hundreds of miles to obtain care is not unreasonable.

Details of the new lawsuit to come.

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