Texas D&E Abortion Ban Struck Down by Appeals Court

AUSTIN, TEXAS—The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals today struck down a Texas measure that would have banned the standard and preferred method of abortion after approximately 15 weeks of pregnancy. The lawsuit was brought in 2017 by Whole Woman’s Health, several Planned Parenthood affiliates, and other Texas abortion providers.

“Today’s win is an important one for people not only in Texas but across the country,” said Amy Hagstrom Miller, President and CEO of Whole Woman’s Health. “Everyone deserves to benefit from the best advancements in medicine and from expert medical care, no matter where they live. With this victory, our physicians can continue to practice to the highest level of their training, and Texans will continue to benefit from their expertise. We are proud, once again, to lead the charge challenging bad laws and ensuring that all Texans get the healthcare they deserve.”

Texans already face a litany of roadblocks and barriers to abortion access, including a state-mandated ultrasound and forced waiting period, restrictions on public and private health insurance coverage for abortion, a ban on the use of telemedicine to administer a medication abortion (abortion by pills), and parental consent and notification laws for minors seeking abortion.

“This law is another example of how overreaching lawmakers are not willing to put Texans health and wellbeing ahead of their anti-abortion agenda,” said Marva Sadler, Director of Clinical Services for Whole Woman’s Health. “Clinic staff see firsthand that laws like this are not needed to keep patients safe during their abortion. We celebrate today’s decision and we hope it is a signal for the future. Stop messing with Texas abortions laws!”

Whole Woman’s Health is no stranger to fighting back against overreaching anti-abortion laws in Texas. In 2016, Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt was decided by the Supreme Court. The 5-4 victory is referred to as the most important reproductive rights case in a generation and stands with Roe and Casey as one of the landmark SCOTUS Repro cases. The win prevented a Texas abortion clinic shutdown law from taking effect and defined what is considered an undue burden for those seeking abortion care services. Since 2016, the Whole Woman’s Health standard has been used in at least 12 states beyond Texas to block or reverse restrictions on abortion access that are not rooted in scientific fact and supported by sound medical evidence.