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Illinois

Refusal to Provide Medical Services

ABORTION REFUSAL CLAUSE

Illinois allows certain individuals or entities to refuse to provide abortion services.

To whom does the refusal clause apply?  Physicians, health-care facilities, or employees thereof.

What does the refusal clause allow?  No physician, health-care facility, or employee thereof, objecting in writing on grounds of conscience, may be required to participate in abortion care.  The refusal of a person to perform, counsel, refer, or participate in abortion services may not be a basis for civil or criminal liability or for discrimination, including in employment, education, and the granting of public aid or benefits. No employer, training institution, or other entity may refer in its application form to or orally question an applicant about refusal to participate.  

The refusal of an HMO, insurance company, or other health-care payer to pay for abortion services, contrary to the payer's conscience as recorded in its governing documents, may not be a basis for civil or criminal liability or for discrimination, including in the granting of licenses, authorizations, aid, and benefits.

Must the refusal be in writing?  Yes.

Does the law require the refusing individual or entity to notify the persons affected?  No.

Are there circumstances under which a refusal clause may not be exercised?  No.

Does the law require the refusing individual or entity to provide medically and factually accurate information or provide a referral for abortion services?  No.

Does the law provide a mechanism for women to otherwise obtain specific reproductive-health services, information, or referrals if an individual and/or entity exercises a refusal clause?  No.

745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/1 to 11 (Enacted 1977; Last Amended 1998); 745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/11.2 to 11.4 (Enacted 1998); 745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/12 to 14 (Enacted 1977; Last Amended 1998); 745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 30/1 (Enacted 1973); 720 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 510/13 (Enacted 1975, Amended 1979).

 

HEALTH-CARE PROVIDER AND HEALTH-CARE INSTITUTION REFUSAL CLAUSES

Illinois allows certain individuals or entities to refuse to comply with individual health-care instructions or decisions based on conscience.

To whom does the refusal clause apply?  Health-care providers and health-care institutions.

What does the refusal clause allow?  No physicians or health-care personnel may be found civilly or criminally liable for refusing to perform, assist, counsel, suggest, recommend, refer, or participate in a health-care service for reasons of conscience.  No person, association, or corporation that owns, operates, supervises, or manages a health-care facility may be found civilly or criminally liable for refusing to permit or provide a health service that violates the facility's governing documents.  No health-care payer may be found civilly or criminally liable for refusing to pay or arrange for payment of a health-care service for reasons of conscience.

It is unlawful to discriminate against a health-care provider, or person, association, or corporation that owns, operates, supervises, or manages a health-care facility, or health-care payer for refusing to permit or provide a health service.

In September 2012, an Illinois court found that this refusal law allows specific pharmacies to refuse to dispense emergency contraception.  These plaintiffs had challenged the state's guaranteed access to birth-control law.  The court ruled that the state may not enforce the regulation against these plaintiffs.

Does the law require the refusing entity to notify the persons affected?  No.

Are there circumstances under which a refusal clause may not be exercised?  No.

Does the law require the refusing individual or entity to provide medically and factually accurate information or provide a referral for the requested health service?  No.

Does the law provide a mechanism for women to otherwise obtain specific reproductive-health services, information, or referrals if an individual and/or entity exercises a refusal clause?  No.

745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/1 to 11 (Enacted 1977; Last Amended 1998); 745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/11.2 to 11.4 (Enacted 1998); 745 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 70/12 to 14 (Enacted 1977; Last Amended 1998).



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