USA judge overturns Trump rule that protected doctors opposed to abortion

  • USA judge overturns Trump rule that protected doctors opposed to abortion

USA judge overturns Trump rule that protected doctors opposed to abortion

A federal court's nullification Wednesday (Nov. 6) of a Trump administration rule protecting the conscience rights of health-care workers elicited disappointment from religious freedom and pro-life advocates.

According to The New York Times news paper, District Judge Paul A. Engelmayer, who was nominated by President Obama, ruled on Tuesday that United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) exceeded its authority and that the rule was not needed.

Thus, the judge warned, a hospital or clinic receptionist who schedules appointments, an elevator operator or an ambulance driver could refuse on moral or religious grounds to do their jobs. The Court's finding that HHS failed to give proper notice of the definition it adopted of "discriminate or discrimination" voids that central dimension of the Rule. The federal judge sided with 26 plaintiff states, municipalities, providers, and advocacy groups, like Planned Parenthood, who argued that the policy could threaten the funding they have relied on and severely disrupt the healthcare system. "Health care is a basic right that should never be subject to political games", she said.

"We are heartened by today's ruling, and we will not stop fighting to prioritize patients' need for standard medical care over health-care personnels' personal religious or moral beliefs", the National Family Planning and Reproductive Health Association said in a statement.

The department could develop new rules but "must do so within the confines of the Administrative Procedures Act and the Constitution", he added.

Engelmayer ruled that the HHS rule is "quintessentially arbitrary and capricious" in its violation of key provisions of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act that govern an employer's accommodation of an employee's religious beliefs.

The Court has carefully considered HHS's application to preserve parts of the Rule that are not compromised by legal deficiencies. Judge Bastian ruled from the bench today in State of Washington v. Azar, agreeing with the ruling out of NY.

On November 6, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of NY issued a ruling in State of NY v. HHS completely vacating the Denial of Care Rule.

President Trump's conscience provision for medical providers was rejected by a NY federal Judge; a judge ordered the United States to administer mental healthcare to separated migrant families; a federal ban on flavored vaping products is near. As a result of that executive order, then-U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memo in October 2017, directing all federal agencies and departments to issue regulations complying with the executive order. "HHS itself classifies the Rule as 'economically significant, ' meaning it will have an annual economic effect of more than $100 million".

"An activist judge has blocked a common-sense rule implementing laws passed by Congress to protect the conscience rights of physicians and other health care clinicians", White House deputy press secretary an special assistant to the president Judd Deere said, according to a Fox News report.