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Idaho

Restrictions on Low-Income Women's Access to Abortion

Idaho prohibits public funding for abortion for women eligible for state medical assistance for general health care unless the procedure is necessary to preserve the woman's life or the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.  In cases of rape or incest, a woman must provide documentation that rape or incest was reported to a law-enforcement agency, a copy of court determination of rape or incest, a written certification from the physician that the woman was unable to report the rape or incest for reasons related to her health, or documentation that the woman was under the age of 18 at the time the act of rape or incest occured.  Idaho Code § 56-209c; Idaho Admin. Code § 16.03.09.511-514 (Amended April 2011); Idaho Dep't of Health and Welfare, Medicaid Provider Handbook, Physician Guidelines §§ 3.10.1-4 (Rev. Ma7 2013) at https://www.idmedicaid.com/Provider%20Guide/Provider%20Handbook.aspx. A bill passed in 2011 removed a provision that permitted funding if a physician documented that the woman was under the age of 18 at the time the act of rape or incest occurred. H.C.R.23, 61st Leg., 1st. Reg. Sess (Idaho 2011).

A court held that this law is constitutional under the Idaho Constitution, finding that Idaho may provide medical assistance for pregnancy-related expenses while refusing to fund abortion services necessary to preserve a woman's health.  However, the court held unconstitutional a provision requiring two-physician certification for the life, rape, and incest exceptions.  Planned Parenthood of Idaho, Inc. v. Kurtz, No. CVOC0103909D (Idaho Dist. Ct. June 12, 2002).


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