Health Care

Texas, Ohio Halt Surgical Abortions Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

Both Texas and Ohio labeled abortions as not medically necessary.

Texas, Ohio Halt Surgical Abortions Amid Coronavirus Pandemic
AP / Tony Dejak

Texas has ordered surgical abortions discontinued during the coronavirus pandemic saying that medical resources must be devoted to fighting COVID-19.

The attorney general of Texas banned any abortion where the mother's life isn't in jeopardy. Ignoring the ban could result in fines up to $1,000 or 180 days of jail time.

The move follows a similar order from Ohio officials who also cited the pandemic in halting abortions in that state on Friday.

Both Texas and Ohio officials say they ordered procedures stopped to prevent the spread of the virus and ration medical equipment such as face masks.

Planned Parenthood of Ohio countered that abortions are time sensitive and therefore essential. Therefore, they argue that they could provide abortions while still complying with state mandates against non-essential procedures. In Texas, pro-choice activists say abortions cannot be delayed without profound consequences.