ACLU challenges faith-based hospitals’ right to exist

In Washington state, the ACLU is challenging the right of faith-based hospitals to exist.  The ACLU seems particularly vexed with the two major Catholic healthcare systems in the state.  Of course, they do not provide abortions or physician-assisted suicide, and they only administer “morning-after” pills after a negative pregnancy test.  These Catholic healthcare providers are partnering with secular providers, and the ACLU is attacking the legality of the partnerships.  Also, the ACLU is worried that the relative proportion of influence of the Catholic providers is on the rise; some mergers have reduced the number of hospital beds available at secular providers.

This is happening in an interesting context.  Washington is currently debating a bill in the legislature that would mandate employers providing abortion coverage in all health care plans.  Of course, the Catholic Church in Washington is firmly against this bill, which would force Catholic employers to pay for abortions.

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