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Tue Oct 5, 2021, 01:58 AM

Biden lifts abortion referral ban on family planning clinics

Source: Associated Press

Biden lifts abortion referral ban on family planning clinics

By RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR
October 5, 2021

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration reversed a ban on abortion referrals by family planning clinics, lifting a Trump-era restriction as political and legal battles over abortion grow sharper from Texas to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Department of Health and Human Services said Monday its new regulation will restore the federal family planning program to the way it ran under the Obama administration, when clinics were able to refer women seeking abortions to a provider. The goal is to “strengthen and restore” services, said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra.

Groups representing the clinics said they hope the Biden administration action will lead some 1,300 local facilities that left in protest over Trump’s policies to return, helping to stabilize a longstanding program shaken by the coronavirus pandemic on top of ideological battles.

“I have heard that almost everywhere in the country people have made the decision that conditions will be good for them to return to the program,” Clare Coleman, president of the umbrella group National Family Planning & Reproductive Health Association, said in an interview. “My sense is that people have been waiting for the rule.”

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Read more: https://apnews.com/article/abortion-coronavirus-pandemic-us-supreme-court-lifestyle-business-532dbd4a69c9eb48f254305e070a47b3

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