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Judge to hear arguments in abortion provider lawsuit

A federal judge will hear arguments next week on whether to dismiss a lawsuit over Idaho’s laws restricting who can provide abortions.

Planned Parenthood of the Greater Northwest and Hawaiian Islands filed the lawsuit late last year, contending that Idaho’s laws barring nurse practitioners, physician assistants, certified nurse midwives and other advanced practice clinicians from performing abortions puts an undue burden on women seeking the procedure.

The case is one of several such lawsuits underway across the nation.

In the Idaho case, attorneys for Planned Parenthood point out that the clinicians are allowed to perform the exact procedures used in abortions when a woman is having a miscarriage, but not when a woman is seeking to terminate a pregnancy.

The Idaho Attorney General’s office contends there is no undue burden on a woman’s access to abortion because doctors can perform the procedures.

The hearing is set for June 6 in Boise’s U.S. District Court.

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