Planned Parenthood sues Arizona for abortion restrictions

Planned Parenthood of Arizona filed a lawsuit against Arizona’s Attorney General, Medical Board, Department of Health Services and the State Board of Nursing in federal court claiming a number of Arizona abortion restrictions are unconstitutional.

Bryan Howard, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood called Arizona’s laws “intrusive measures.” Currently, Arizona law does not allow nurse practitioners or physicians’ assistants to provide abortions. Only doctors can perform the procedure. Patients are also required to see a doctor in-person 24 hours before the procedure. Providers also are banned from prescribing abortion pills via telemedicine.

Planned Parenthood claimed in a press release that Arizona’s laws have contributed to extended waiting times for abortion services and a decline in abortion clinics. The group claims that the laws have left 80 percent of Arizona counties with no access to abortion services.

“Arizona is routinely ranked the most pro-life state in the country because of our sensible, compassionate laws that ensure all women are informed of their health care choices, while protecting the lives of the most vulnerable in society,” the AZGOP argued in a press release. “With this dangerous lawsuit, Planned Parenthood is threatening to reverse policies that put women and children ahead of politics, revealing just how out of touch the nation’s largest abortion provider is with Arizona values.”

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