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Government & Politics

Court Puts on Hold Ohio Law That Bans Telemedicine from Being Used for Abortions

Julie Murray, staff attorney for Public Policy Litigation & Law at Planned Parenthood Federation of America
Hamilton County Common Pleas Court
Julie Murray, staff attorney for Public Policy Litigation & Law at Planned Parenthood Federation of America, argues against the idea that a doctor needs to be present when a woman takes drugs to induce an abortion.

The state’s law that bans the use of telemedicine for abortions is not going into effect right now at the order of a Hamilton County court. 

The new Ohio law banning doctors from using telemedicine to prescribe abortion drugs was supposed to go into effect last week on April 12. But it was put on hold by a Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge so both sides could argue it today.

Supporters of the new law, including Ohio Right to Life, say doctors need to be physically present when women take the drugs in case something goes wrong. 

But Julie Murray, staff attorney for public policy litigation with Planned Parenthood Federation of America argued otherwise. 

“Having her in person with the doctor at that Day 2 visit will have no impact on the extent of which incomplete abortion is identified, the extent to which it occurs or how it is treated," Murray said.

Supporters of legal abortion say the ban makes it harder to access abortion in Ohio and is punitive to poor women who cannot often travel longer distances to seek abortions. And they say it is unconstitutional. A Hamilton County judge put a temporary halt on the ban till it can be fully argued later. 
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