Planned Parenthood of the Heartland filed a lawsuit in federal court Sept. 30 asking a judge to grant a stay against a rule from the Iowa Board of Medicine that would restrict abortion access in the state.
On Aug. 30, members of the state board voted to adopt rules that would ban telemedicine delivery for medical abortion and require that patients receive a physical examination before and after the administration of an abortion-inducing drug. The medical board asserts that the telemedicine practices “are inconsistent with the protocols approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the manufacturer of the drugs” because they don't include an in-person meeting with a physician.
But Planned Parenthood argues that the ruling is politically motivated, not medically necessary, and results in putting Iowa women at risk. According to the organization, the telemedicine approach was implemented in 2008 to provide women in remote areas equal access to abortion procedures and was investigated fully to ensure its compliance with state law.