Judge in Texas sides with women who sued over abortion bans

A Texas judge has ruled in favor of a group of women and doctors who sued the state over medical exceptions in its abortion laws.

The women argued that the state’s abortion bans lack clarity, putting patients in danger during medically complicated pregnancies.

In her ruling, Travis County District Judge Jessica Mangrum writes that “uncertainty regarding the scope of the medical exception and the related threat of enforcement of Texas’s abortion bans” creates a risk that doctors “will have no choice but to bar or delay the provision of abortion care to pregnant persons in Texas for whom an abortion would prevent or alleviate a risk of death or risk to their health…for fear of liability under Texas’s abortion bans.”

The judge issued a temporary injunction prohibiting the laws from being enforced against health care professionals who provide abortions in emergency medical situations based on their “good faith judgment.”

The decision follows an emotional hearing last month in which several women described struggling to navigate emergency medical decisions about pregnancies that doctors said endangered their health.

The lawsuit on behalf of 13 patients and two doctors was filed earlier this year.

The injunction also applies to pregnancies with fatal fetal anomalies. Samantha Casiano testified about her experience carrying a fetus with anencephaly — the brain and skull do not fully develop — to term. She gave birth to a daughter who lived four hours, and described watching her daughter gasp for breath.

Mangrum’s ruling specifies that any pregnancy with “a fetal condition where the fetus is unlikely to survive the pregnancy and sustain life after birth” is also entitled to abortion care in Texas.

The injunction is effective immediately and the judge set a trial date of March 25, 2024.

What's your reaction?

Related Posts

1 of 676