Clinics that provide abortion services would face greater difficulty obtaining the necessary permits under the UT prohibition.
A Utah court will consider Planned Parenthood’s plea to delay the implementation of a statewide ban on abortion facilities until next week on Friday.
Clinics will no longer be allowed to seek for the licenses they’ve traditionally required to operating, which, according to Planned Parenthood, will effectively halt access to abortions in the state. This is scheduled for next week.
This organization is responsible for operating three of Utah’s four abortion facilities. While waiting for the state Supreme Court to rule on a “trigger law” that would make most abortions illegal regardless of the stage of pregnancy, the Utah Legislature “sought an alternative way” to limit abortions with the clinic ban, according to the article.
Planned Parenthood filed a motion earlier this month asking the court to delay implementing the clinic ban because “women will be forced to carry pregnancies to term against their will,” or “stay pregnant until they can travel out of state to get this important, time-sensitive medical care,” the organization argued.
This clinic restriction is only the most recent effort by Utah authorities to restrict access to abortion. This occurs after the Supreme Court of the United States overturned Roe v. Wade less than a year ago. With this ruling, two previously enacted laws went into effect simultaneously: one prohibiting abortions after 18 weeks of pregnancy in 2019, and another prohibiting abortions altogether in 2020. Exceptions include situations when the mother’s health is in jeopardy or if a crime such as rape or incest has been reported to authorities.
The 2020 prohibition was challenged in court by the state’s Planned Parenthood affiliate. A judge delayed its implementation in July to allow for the resolution of legal issues. The 18-week suspension has been in effect ever then.
Clinics risk having their licenses revoked if the ban is implemented. Hospitals, which often do not specialize in low-cost outpatient abortions like delivering the abortion pill, will thereafter perform the vast majority of abortions. Most abortions in Utah are performed at clinics (95%).
After May 3rd, when the new law takes effect, abortion clinics will no longer be able to apply to be legally recognized. The licenses of all medical facilities would be revoked on January 1, 2024. What we’re talking about here is a total prohibition.
Planned Parenthood has cautioned that it has a different view of the statute and is concerned that it might put doctors at danger of being sued and make abortions illegal, despite assurances from state authorities that clinic licenses will remain until then. They have threatened to halt abortion services at their facilities if they are not prevented from doing so.