A federal judge on Friday struck down a Wisconsin law requiring doctors performing abortions to get hospital admitting privileges, ruling that any benefits to women’s health from the requirement were “substantially outweighed” by the harm done by restricting access to abortion. Judge William M. Conley of Federal District Court, who had earlier put the law on hold ruled that the 2013 law was unconstitutional and issued a permanent injunction blocking its enforcement. Planned Parenthood and Affiliated Medical Services had sued the state, arguing t that it would amount to restricting access to abortions in Wisconsin. State attorneys contended that the mandate would ensure continuity of care for any women hospitalized with abortion complications. In a statement, Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union noted that only four health centers provide abortions in Wisconsin. If the law took effect, the groups said, the largest of those centers would be forced to close immediately, and the remaining three “will not be able to absorb the unmet need.” Gov. Scott Walker signed the law on July 5, 2013, and it required providers to have privileges in place by July 8. Judge Conley noted that the “sudden adoption” of the requirements, without giving enough time for compliance, “compels a finding that its purpose was to impose a substantial obstacle on women’s right to abortions in Wisconsin.”

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