Federal Court Blocks Indiana from Defunding Planned Parenthood

Indiana can’t block Medicaid funds for Planned Parenthood just because the organization provides abortions, a federal appeals court ruled yesterday, upholding the crux of a lower court’s order that said the state couldn’t deny patients the right to choose their own health care provider. The state argued that federal law says Medicaid cannot be used to cover abortions in most circumstances and that the program indirectly funds the procedures by providing money for Planned Parenthood.

Indiana was the first state to deny Planned Parenthood Medicaid funds for general health services.

Bryan Corbin, a spokesman for the Indiana attorney general’s office, said the state was reviewing the appeals court opinion. The state can either ask the full court to review the panel’s ruling or appeal directly to the Supreme Court.