Press Release

Court protects Catholic healthcare clinic’s care for pregnant women in need Federal district court judge rules against Colorado’s ban on abortion pill reversal

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Ryan Colby 202-349-7219

Additional Information

WASHINGTON A federal court in Colorado late last night protected a Catholic healthcare clinic’s ability to help women reverse the effects of the first abortion pill. Bella Health and Wellness v. Weiser is a challenge to a new Colorado law that forbids doctors and nurses to give progesterone to help women who took the first abortion pill, even if they were tricked or forced into taking it. The decision by a federal judge protected Bella and the many women who come to them for medical help to continue their pregnancies.  

Founded by Catholic mother and daughter nurse practitioners Dede Chism and Abby Sinnett, Bella offers life-affirming, dignified healthcare to men, women, and children. Like healthcare clinics across the nation, Bella offers progesterone—a naturally occurring hormone that is essential to the maintenance of a healthy pregnancy—to women at risk of miscarriage. Studies also show that progesterone can help women who have taken the first abortion pill but decide they want to continue their pregnancies. Consistent with its religious mission to uphold the dignity of every life, Bella offers progesterone to these women who seek help to keep their unborn children after taking the first abortion pill.    

“Some of these women have had abortion pills forced on them, and others change their minds,” said Dede Chism and Abby Sinnett, cofounders of Bella Health and Wellness. “We are relieved and overjoyed to continue helping the many women who come to our clinic seeking help.”  

Earlier this year, Colorado passed a law that targets pro-life clinics like Bella Health and Wellness by making it unprofessional conduct to offer women progesterone when seeking to reverse the effects of the first abortion pill. Bella asked a federal court to block the law and protect its ability to help pregnant women in need of life-saving care. In April, Colorado agreed to put the law on hold until three state boards weighed in on the safety of abortion pill reversal. During that time, Bella successfully helped multiple women continue their pregnancies, including one who recently gave birth to a healthy baby. However, despite evidence of progesterone’s safety and effectiveness, the state still banned it. Late last night, Judge Daniel Domenico temporarily stopped Colorado’s ban after Bella asked the court to protect its care for women last week.  

“Colorado is trying to make outlaws of doctors and nurses providing life-saving and compassionate care to women they serve,” said Rebekah Ricketts, counsel at Becket. “This ruling ensures that pregnant women across the state will receive the care they deserve and won’t be forced to have abortions against their will.”  

Colorado has 30 days to appeal the decision to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.  

For more information or to arrange an interview with a Becket attorney, contact Ryan Colby atmedia@becketlaw.orgor 202-349-7219.