The Trump administration rules that bar health care providers in the federal family planning program for low-income women, from referring them for abortions has been upheld by a US appeals court.
The 7-4 ruling by the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals overturned decisions issued by judges in Washington, Oregon and California.
These changes will ban taxpayer-funded clinics in the Title X program from making abortion referrals.
Title X is a 1970 law designed to improve access to family planning services. But under this law, federal money may not be used in programs “where abortion is a method of family planning.”
They also prohibit clinics that receive federal money from sharing office space with abortion providers.
Abortion is a legal medical procedure, but federal laws prohibit the use of Title X or other taxpayer funds to pay for abortions except in cases of rape, incest, or to save the life of the woman.
More than 20 states and several civil rights and health organisations challenged the rules in cases filed in Oregon, Washington and California.