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Attorney General Josh Stein Challenges New Title X Restrictions on Women’s Healthcare Services

Release date: 3/5/2019

(RALEIGH) Attorney General Josh Stein today filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Trump administration’s new Title X “gag rule” that restricts access to healthcare services and information for women and families. Title X is a federal grant program that funds family planning services to help patients get breast and cervical cancer screenings, well-woman exams, sexually transmitted infection screenings and treatments, and other services.
“Title X clinics screen for cancer, prevent unintended pregnancies, and reduce the spread of sexually transmitted infections,” said Attorney General Josh Stein. “These are critical healthcare services that change and save lives. This proposed gag rule would prevent women in North Carolina from making the healthcare decisions that allow them to lead happy, healthy lives.”
Under the new rule issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, healthcare providers in any clinic that receives Title X funding will be barred from referring a patient for an abortion, even if the patient requests the information, and in many circumstances, from even discussing an abortion with a patient. The new rule also mandates healthcare providers to refer every pregnant patient for prenatal care, regardless of the needs or the wishes of the patient.
The lawsuit alleges that the gag rule would reduce access to and erode the quality of the reproductive healthcare that Title X was originally intended to provide for low-income individuals. The new rule would also interfere with the relationship between a healthcare provider and their patient by limiting what a doctor can say to a patient.
Attorney General Stein is joined in filing this lawsuit by the Attorneys General of Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and Wisconsin.
A copy of the complaint can be found here.

Laura Brewer (919) 716-6484


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