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Abortion providers in Kansas challenge several state restrictions designed to make it harder to provide and access abortion care 

Overland Park, KS — Today, Kansas abortion providers filed a lawsuit in state court challenging several onerous, harmful restrictions. These laws make abortion care harder to access by creating delays and forcing providers to relay inaccurate, misleading information that threatens patients’ health and undermines medical ethics. One such restriction—scheduled to take effect July 1—forces providers to falsely tell their patients that a medication abortion can be “reversed,” an unproven claim not based on medicine or science. That law was enacted by state legislators soon after the Governor vetoed the measure and eight months after Kansans overwhelmingly rejected efforts to eliminate the fundamental right to abortion under the state constitution. 

Even though abortion is protected as a fundamental right under the state constitution, Kansas lawmakers have singled out abortion providers and patients with medically unnecessary restrictions. In the lawsuit, abortion providers argue that these requirements violate the state constitution, including the rights to abortion and free speech, and must be blocked. Plaintiffs have also asked the court to immediately block the state's so-called medication abortion "reversal" law before it takes effect on July 1.   

The restrictions being challenged in the lawsuit include: 

  • A requirement that patients receive inaccurate state-mandated information, including medically unfounded statements that abortion poses a “risk of premature birth in future pregnancies” and “risk of breast cancer”.  
  • Arbitrary bureaucratic requirements that certain state-mandated information be received in printed form, in specific typeface, font size, and color 24 hours in advance of an abortion, delaying access to time-sensitive health care.  
  • A medically unnecessary rule forcing patients to wait 30 minutes after meeting with their abortion provider before they may receive abortion care.  
  • A law requiring providers to relay to patients at least five times that a medication abortion can be “reversed”—a false, and potentially dangerous, claim unsupported by scientific evidence.  

“Last year, Kansans voted that they wanted abortion access to remain constitutionally protected in their state. Now politicians have passed a law that would force providers to tell their patients outright falsehoods, piling on to already coercive requirements that make abortion in Kansas harder to access and demean those seeking abortion care,” said Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights. With the fall of Roe v. Wade, state constitutional protections for abortion rights are especially critical and we will defend them vigorously.” 

"Kansas lawmakers continued their attacks on reproductive freedom this legislative session by enacting harmful restrictions that delay patients' care and subject them to lies about a safe and effective medical procedure," said Alexis McGill Johnson, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. "Make no mistake: these laws are designed to shame and stigmatize people as part of a broader effort to make abortion inaccessible. We will not stand by as Kansans' rights continue to be undermined — especially after they made their support for abortion access resoundingly clear last summer. We're proud to stand with our partners in this fight and will do whatever possible to defeat these laws and protect patients' access to care, free of political interference.”   

“This year, instead of listening to the overwhelming majority of Kansans who trust patients to control their own reproductive health care, lawmakers enacted new restrictions on abortions that spread inaccurate, irresponsible, and dangerous information,” said Emily Wales, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Great Plains. “Under state law, doctors are required to lie to their patients with information that directly contradicts evidence-based medicine, but people deserve facts and honest conversations without political interference. Today, we have joined with providers and advocates to fight the egregious restrictions that violate Kansans’ constitutional rights and put their health and safety at risk.”   

This case was filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Arnold & Porter, and Teresa Woody on behalf of plaintiffs Hodes & Nauser, M.D.s, P.A.; Traci Lynn Nauser, M.D.; Tristan Fowler, D.O.; and Comprehensive Health of Planned Parenthood Great Plains.  


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