Last month, a federal judge ruled that several of Indiana’s laws restricting abortion are unconstitutional, including the state’s ban on telemedicine consultations between doctors and women seeking abortions.
U.S. District Court Judge Sarah Evans Barker permanently blocked the state from enforcing the telemedicine ban, along with laws requiring in-person examinations by a doctor before medication abortions and the prohibition on second-trimester abortions outside hospitals or surgery centers.
CUNY SPH Associate Professor Diana Romero provided expert testimony that helped win the case. Her testimony focused on the undue burdens that these regulations would place on individuals who already face barriers to accessing health care, such as those who are poor and low-income, have jobs that do not provide paid time off, have limited access to transportation, and are racial/ethnic minorities, to name a few. She also spoke to the disparate maternal and child health-related outcomes experienced by these groups and Indiana’s abysmal record on related social and health indicators relative to the rest of the country.
“Although too many people have already suffered under Indiana’s restrictive abortion policies, the court’s overturning many of them in this case will undoubtedly benefit countless others,” Dr. Romero says. “Sadly, we can only briefly celebrate such a public health win and then be ready to turn to the next assault, such as Texas’ near-total abortion ban.”