Attorney General Raoul Continues Advocacy for Access to Reproductive Autonomy and Emergency Health Care

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Health

Attorney General Kwame Raoul, as part of a coalition of 24 attorneys general, filed a legal brief advocating in support of the federal government’s challenge to Idaho’s near-total ban on abortion access. “Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling overturning Roe v. Wade, we have seen increased attempts to criminalize abortion care even in situations when the patient’s health or life is at stake,” Raoul said. “I will continue to stand with my colleagues against these efforts and ensure women in every state have access to life-saving health care.” In their brief filed in United States of America v. Idaho, Raoul and the coalition support the federal government’s argument that Idaho’s ban conflicts with the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA), a federal law that requires doctors and hospitals to provide stabilizing emergency treatment to patients, including abortion. Every hospital in the United States that operates an emergency department and participates in Medicare is subject to EMTALA. Idaho’s law is a near-total ban on abortion and subjects health care providers to possible criminal prosecution or disciplinary action for providing emergency care that is protected under EMTALA. Raoul and the attorneys general state that if Idaho hospitals and providers do not provide the emergency abortion care required by EMTALA, patients will be forced to turn to out-of-state hospitals and providers, adding strain to other states’ emergency departments that are already struggling with overcrowding, long wait times, and staff shortages.

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