Judge strikes down healthcare conscience rule
by Lynde Langdon
Posted 11/06/19, 01:14 pm
A federal judge in New York shot down a Trump administration regulation that protected the rights of pro-life healthcare workers. U.S. District Judge Paul Engelmayer ruled Wednesday that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services exceeded its authority in crafting a rule that would have allowed medical workers to claim religious or moral exemptions to performing abortions or other procedures that violate their consciences.
What does this mean for healthcare workers? Engelmayer based his ruling on the way HHS structured and planned to implement the regulation. But he denied an argument by plaintiffs that claimed the allowance of conscience objections to participating in abortions amounted to a state establishment of religion. That leaves the door open for redrafting the rule so it could survive a court challenge.
Dig deeper: Read Rachel Lynn Aldrich’s report in Liberties about the state of healthcare conscience protections across the country.
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