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Planned Parenthood Challenges Indiana’s 2018 Anti-Abortion Law

A lawsuit challenging Indiana's 2018 anti-abortion law marks the sixth suit Planned Parenthood has brought in federal court against the state since 2011. (Lauren Chapman/IPB News)

Birch Bayh Federal Building (Lauren Chapman/IPB News)

Planned Parenthood and the ACLU want a federal judge to strike down parts of Indiana’s new anti-abortion law.

The lawsuit challenges the 2018 law’s new abortion complication reporting requirements and mandated yearly inspections of abortion clinics. Under previous law, such inspections were optional.

Proponents of the law argue both provisions are meant to ensure patient safety and help the state learn more about potential abortion issues. And as Gov. Eric Holcomb noted when he signed the bill, 27 states require complication reports.

But Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky and the ACLU of Indiana argue the complication reports are unconstitutionally vague. For instance, one provision requires reporting of “any adverse physical or psychological condition arising from the induction or performance of an abortion.” The suit filed in federal court Monday calls that “so broad as to be meaningless.”

And the lawsuit says some of the complications listed in the law aren’t associated with abortions – or, in the case of blood clots, one of the lengthy list in the measure, considered a side effect but not a complication of the procedures.

And the suit challenges the yearly inspection mandate because it says no other health care facilities in the state face such a requirement.

This is the sixth lawsuit brought by Planned Parenthood against the state since 2011. The health care provider has won partial or complete victories in each of the previous five.

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