Judge OKs Abortion Restrictions To Take Effect April 1

April 01, 2014

A federal judge in Tucson is allowing new state-mandated abortion restrictions to take effect on Tuesday. The judge denied Planned Parenthood Arizona's request put the new regulations on hold.

Up until now, it was possible for women in Arizona to get a medication abortion, the kind done with two pills rather than surgery, up to 9 weeks of pregnancy. But starting April 1, that window is two weeks shorter.

Regulations passed by the state legislature require doctors to follow the Food and Drug Administration’s instructions on the medication’s label. Doctors had been using an updated protocol endorsed by medical organizations, rather than the FDA instructions written in 2000. 

Planned Parenthood Arizona and a Tucson abortion provider sued in early March. They argued the FDA instructions are outdated and the change will deprive women of their right to a safe abortion. 

On Monday, the judge refused to block the regulations from taking effect, but the lawsuit will still proceed.