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Over the weekend, hundreds of people rallied in Boise, ID to protect access to emergency abortion care ahead of the U.S. Supreme Court hearing oral arguments in Moyle v. United States on April 24. The case threatens the rights of pregnant people to get the emergency medical care they need — including abortion care — under a federal law that requires hospital emergency rooms to provide treatment for all people that stabilizes their conditions. The law, enacted in 1986, is called the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA) and remains in place despite state abortion bans.

Photographs: Planned Parenthood Federation of America

Speakers at the rally included Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Alaska, Hawai'i, Indiana, Kentucky president and CEO Rebecca Gibron; Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates Idaho state director Mistie DelliCarpini-Tollman; a patient who was forced to leave Idaho for emergency abortion care; and a physician who is now unable to offer that care in her state. 

Alongside Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocate’s rally, Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) hosted an immersive experience that allowed visitors to hear audio recordings from patients who needed emergency abortion care and physicians directly affected by abortion bans. These stories, collected by PPFA and Physicians for Reproductive Health, are available on YouTube. One patient, Layla, needed emergency abortion care at eight weeks, and her delayed care left her with lifelong complications. Another patient, Allie, suffered an ectopic pregnancy and would have died without an abortion. And physicians Dr. Ereme and Dr. Heywood know that every minute counts when a patient is experiencing an emerging medical complication — and that politicians don’t belong in medical decisions. 

Photographs: Planned Parenthood Federation of America

Learn more about the emergency care ban case and the impact of Idaho’s abortion ban from these key news stories: 

Boise Public Radio: Fear and frustration filled the air at this Idaho reproductive rights rally at the Capitol

“For a state government to say that abortion should not be included in emergency care, is such an egregious affront to human life,” said Dr. Keemi Erme, a Washington-based OBGYN, who traveled to Idaho’s capital city to support fellow caregivers who say they feel threatened with possible legal action if they have to perform an emergency abortion. As a result, a number of those physicians have left, or are thinking about leaving, Idaho.

“We already have two hospitals here in Idaho who have shut down their maternity wards because we have providers fleeing the state,” said [Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Hawai’i, Alaska, Indiana, Kentucky president and CEO] Rebecca Gibron. “Lawmakers can deny all they want, but the facts are clear: physicians are leaving the State of Idaho for fear of criminal prosecution for simply doing their job.”

Huffington Post: The Supreme Court Is About To Debate Whether States Can Outlaw Life-Saving Abortions

Dr. Jim Souza, chief physician executive of St. Luke’s Health System in Idaho, told reporters on a call last week that hospital staff have been forced to airlift women out-of-state to get emergency abortions. That should be completely unnecessary, Souza said, because St. Luke’s is the largest and best-equipped hospital in the state for emergency medical complications.

USA Today: The miscarriage was inevitable. Could she have had an ER abortion? Supreme Court to decide

A woman 18-weeks pregnant arrived in an Idaho emergency room in distress.

Her condition – hourglassing membranes − was so dire, a miscarriage was inevitable.

Doctors feared running afoul of Idaho’s abortion restrictions if they provided the treatment that is standard in these situations: offering an abortion because the infection risk was high and the fetus would not survive.

The patient could not travel to another state; she would likely miscarry during the trip and might bleed to death.

So, she waited.


Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational, advocacy, and limited electoral activity, including grassroots organizing, legislative advocacy, and voter education.

Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable sexual and reproductive health care for all people, as well as the nation’s largest provider of sex education. With more than 600 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect, and without judgment, striving to create equitable access to health care. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable education and information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives. Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that supports the independently incorporated Planned Parenthood affiliates operating health centers across the U.S


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