On April 26, District Court Judge Edward Chen granted a statewide preliminary injunction in Essential Access Health v. Azar, et al., a lawsuit challenging the Trump Administration’s sweeping changes to the federal Title X family planning program. Keker, Van Nest & Peters represents Essential Access Health, the leader of California’s Title X program - the largest and most diverse Title X system in the country - and co-plaintiff, Dr. Melissa Marshall, in their efforts to block the regulations from taking effect on the grounds that they are illegal and will inflict irreparable harm on Title X patients throughout the nation. The regulations were scheduled to take effect on May 3, 2019.
“Today, the Court temporarily blocked unlawful regulations that would have forced doctors to mislead some pregnant patients – and that would have devastated access to quality reproductive and related health care for the one million Californians who depend on Title X services each year,” said Keker, Van Nest & Peters partner Michelle Ybarra. “Women should not have to fight for access to comprehensive medical information and quality health care. Because of these regulations, we did have to fight – and we just won a crucial victory.”
The case is Essential Access Health, et al. v. Azar, et al, 3:19-cv-01195, U.S.D.C., N.D. Cal. The Keker Van Nest & Peters team representing Essential Access Health is led by Michelle Ybarra, and includes Tina Sessions, Sophie Hood, Philip Tassin, Sarah Salomon, Divya Musinipally, and Kathryn Bowen. The preliminary injunction motion can be found here.
Essential Access Health has been a Title X grantee for the state of California since the program was established in 1970. Dr. Marshall is a family medicine physician practicing at a Title X-funded health center in Yolo County, California. Essential Access Health distributes Title X funding in California to support the delivery of essential health services including birth control, STD and pregnancy tests, and cancer screenings. Essential Access Health’s current Title X provider network includes 355 health centers in 38 of California’s 58 counties that collectively serve 1,000,000 low-income patients each year. One in four of all Title X patients served nationwide is served at a Title X-funded health center in California.