Today, the AMA, along with the Oregon Medical Association and Planned Parenthood Federation of America, filed a lawsuit to block the Trump Administration’s recently announced rule on Title X, arguing that it would destroy the Title X program, jeopardize preventive care and impose restrictions on the medical advice that physicians can relay to their patients, according to a press release issued by the association.
The lawsuit, which was filed in the United States District Court, District of Oregon, also contends that the rule would withhold federal family planning funding from critical entities and harm millions of vulnerable, disadvantaged patients who rely on Title X, according to the AMA.
This lawsuit comes shortly after the HHS announced its new rule on February 22, which sparked concerns among doctors.
The associations call the new rule “unethical, illegal and dangerous,” according to the release.
“Because of the administration’s overreach and interference in health care decision making, physicians will be prohibited from having open, frank conversations with their patients about all their health care options,” Barbara L. McAneny, MD, president of AMA, said in the release. “This blatant violation of patients’ rights under the Code of Medical Ethics is untenable.”
The AMA filed a lawsuit to block the Trump Administration’s rule, arguing that it would destroy the Title X program, jeopardize preventive care and impose restrictions on the medical advice that physicians can relay to their patients.
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“The new rule imposes a government gag rule on what information physicians can provide to their patients,” she added. “The administration wants to allow Title X clinics not to provide full information to patients about all of their health care options and block physicians from providing appropriate referrals for care.”
Under the administration’s new rule, the government is advocating for clinics to refuse to provide relevant information to patients and to provide misleading, biased and/or incomplete information, according to the AMA.
The foundation of family-planning health care is threatened by the HHS rule, according to AMA. The rule “sets a dangerous precedent of government interference with the patient-physician relationship,” according to AMA.
Since being instated 50 years ago, Title X has helped provide contraceptive services, cancer screenings and other important preventive care to millions of patients, especially those with low-income, as well as reduce rates of unintended pregnancy and abortion, according to AMA.
The lawsuit states that if the administration’s rule becomes a law, many providers will be required to withdraw from Title X, leaving vulnerable patients and the health of the nation at risk, according to AMA.
In a separate case, attorneys general from 21 states have also sued to stop implementation of the administration’s Title X rule. Pending the outcome of these lawsuits, the new rule is slated to go into effect May 3. – by Alaina Tedesco
Disclosures: McAneny is the president of AMA.