Planned Parenthood of the Heartland v. Iowa Board of Medicine

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Friday, June 19, 2015

Description:  Planned Parenthood of the Heartland has filed suit against an Iowa Board of Medicine ban on “webcam” abortions, in which women are provided with abortion-inducing drugs without any in-person examination by a licensed physician. Sixteen other states have enacted similar bans.


Iowa high court strikes down ban on ‘webcam’ abortions

ADF: Decision places Planned Parenthood profits ahead of women’s safety
Friday, June 19, 2015

Attorney sound bites:  Michael J. Norton  |  Kevin Theriot

DES MOINES, Iowa – The Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday to strike down an Iowa Board of Medicine ban on “webcam” abortions, in which women are provided with abortion-inducing drugs without any in-person examination by a licensed physician.
 
In August 2014, Planned Parenthood of the Heartland appealed a trial court’s decision to uphold the ban. ADF filed a friend-of-the-court brief  with the Iowa Supreme Court in November 2014 on behalf of pro-life advocates in support of affirming the trial court’s decision. Sixteen other states have enacted similar bans.
 
“Women’s health should never take a backseat to irresponsible practices like Planned Parenthood’s lucrative ‘webcam’ abortion scheme, which endangers lives,” said ADF Senior Counsel Michael J. Norton. “We wish the Iowa Supreme Court would have affirmed the lower court’s decision, which simply upheld the Iowa Board of Medicine’s common-sense rules and adopted the same protections for pregnant women that exist in 16 other states.”

“Planned Parenthood and other abortionists must be held to basic medical standards of care,” said ADF Legal Counsel Natalie Decker,” and little is more basic than an in-person examination by a physician before a procedure that poses serious health risks.”
 
ADF filed the brief in Planned Parenthood of the Heartland v. Iowa Board of Medicine on behalf of the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists; Donna J. Harrison, M.D.; Iowa Right to Life; and Susan Thayer, a former director of an Iowa Planned Parenthood facility who resigned her position rather than perform “webcam” abortions. ADF attorneys also represent Thayer in a separate lawsuit against Planned Parenthood of the Heartland that accuses the abortion giant of healthcare fraud and abuse of taxpayer dollars.
 
“Regardless of one’s position on abortion, everyone should agree that Planned Parenthood should not be allowed to jeopardize women’s lives by disregarding established medical protocols,” added ADF Senior Counsel Kevin Theriot. “Regrettably, the court’s decision allows abortionists to defy basic medical standards that are meant to put women’s safety first.”

Though it struck down the webcam abortion ban, the court upheld the board’s requirement that the parents of a minor be notified before undergoing a webcam abortion.
 
  • Pronunciation guide: Theriot (TAIR'-ee-oh)

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith.


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Additional resources: Planned Parenthood of the Heartland v. Iowa Board of Medicine

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Friday, June 19, 2015

Previous news releases:

  • 2015-03-10: ADF: Iowa high court should uphold ban on ‘webcam’ abortions
  • 2014-11-25: ‘Webcam’ abortions put Planned Parenthood profits ahead of women’s health
  • 2014-08-20: Iowa court upholds ban on ‘webcam’ abortions
  • 2013-08-30: Iowa Board of Medicine bans ‘webcam’ abortions

Legal documents, related news, and other related resources available in the right panel when this page is viewed at ADFmedia.org.