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Healthcare providers seek Supreme Court review of Texas abortion law

By Tomas Monzon
Healthcare providers seek Supreme Court review of Texas abortion law
Anti-abortion activists take part in the 42nd March for Life outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 22. The court is expected to consider a case on a Texas abortion law in the fall. File Photo by Pete Marovich/UPI | License Photo

WASHINGTON, Sept. 3 (UPI) -- A group of healthcare providers asked the U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday to review a federal appeals court decision that would close several abortion clinics in Texas.

The ruling centers around a Texas law that would enforce "the most devastating abortion restrictions allowed to go into effect since Roe v. Wade," said Nancy Northrup, CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights.

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Specifically, it stipulates that abortion facilities must adapt to hospital standards (such as minimum sizes for rooms and doorways). Additionally, any physician performing an abortion must have admitting privileges at a local hospital.

Before the law was passed, more than 40 facilities provided abortions in Texas. Now there are 18. If the law is fully enacted, Northrup said, the number of clinics would fall to 10.

The providers contend that more than 60,000 women a year undergo abortions in Texas.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton argues that the law would help abortion clinics and staff meet basic health standards.

The Supreme Court is expected to consider the case in the fall. On June 29, the court ordered Texas abortion clinics to stay open as it reviewed the law.

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A ruling could clarify a 1992 decision in Planned Parenthood v. Casey. In that case, the court ruled states may not place undue burdens on the constitutionally protected right to abortion. These burdens include extravagant health regulations that would present a substantial obstacle.

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