June 27, 2024

The Supreme Court of the United States released a decision in the EMTALA Case (Idaho/Moyle v United States). This decision is a procedural one that delays a ruling on the merits of the central question of “must hospitals in Idaho provide abortion care when necessary to stabilize emergency conditions that seriously threaten a patient’s health”. Based on this procedural decision, for now, healthcare providers in Idaho may provide abortion care in medical emergencies. This decision does not change anything in other states with abortion bans. 

The Society of Family Planning contributed to this case by joining an amicus brief with over 20 professional medical organizations and hundreds of other experts asserting that abortion care is essential, is sometimes necessary to emergently save a pregnant individual’s life, and must be protected by the long standing federal Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act. 

The Society recognizes that both this and the Alliance decisions are hollow wins among what feels like a tidal wave of losses for abortion care and access in the last several years. Despite these “favorable” decisions, millions of people are still unable to access abortion care in their own communities. Until we are able to achieve the Society’s vision of just and equitable abortion and contraception informed by science, the Society will continue to fight alongside our community and partners.

The Society of Family Planning responds to SCOTUS decision about mifepristone and shares research, clinical guidance, and learning resources.