Supreme Court rules on emergency abortion care case

Idaho’s abortion law had an immediate effect on the state’s hospitals. On January 5, the Supreme Court lifted an injunction, so Idaho no longer has EMTALA protections against pregnancy complications.

Doctors leaving Idaho: The law hasn’t just harmed patient care, said Molly Meegan, legal director of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), a professional organization that represents the majority of practitioners in the United States.

Sending patients out of state: In April, St. Luke’s, the state’s largest emergency services provider, said it had to send six pregnant patients from its emergency department out of state by air transport to protect their health . The previous year, when the injunction was in effect, the hospital only had to do so once, according to details in Wednesday’s Supreme Court filing.

Dr. Kara Cadwallader, a physician who works in Idaho and is a member of the Idaho Coalition for Safe Health Care, said her hospital Last week, she had to send a pregnant woman out of state for treatment when she could have been treated. She is “very excited” about Wednesday’s decision, even though it is a “small step.”

“Beyond any political reasons, this is extremely important for pregnant patients here in Idaho, who will now be able to access emergency care appropriately,” Cadwallader said.

Different approach to prenatal conversations: Dr. Julie Lyons, a family physician at St. Luke’s, told CNN earlier this year that Idaho’s abortion law is so restrictive that she makes sure to talk to patients — even when they first antenatal appointment – ​​what they will need to do. if they have an emergency.

“We’re having this discussion more than ever — like, if you have to leave the state, you need to check with your insurance, you need to make sure you have flight life insurance,” Lyons said in February.

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