In two last-minute, final-minute rulings, two federal courts blocked the withdrawal of the birth control mandate by the Trump administration.
The new provisions should enter into force on Monday, but the two will have their court sentences temporarily suspended.
The Trump Regulation would allow large private companies and religious nonprofit organizations to distance themselves from the ACA requirement that health plans cover most birth control methods at no cost to the patient. Enterprises, even Fortune 500 companies, could invoke any moral or religious objection to justify the discontinuation of contraception.
US District Court Judge Haywood Gilliam has issued an interim injunction against the new rules of the administration on Sunday to allow a legal challenge. 1
The injunction was then extended to the rest of the country in an order issued by Judge Wendy Bettlestone on Monday, in a separate case filed by Pennsylvania and New Jersey to end the regulations.
The court sentences do not permanently block new Trump rules, but prevent them from coming into force while the lawsuits are in progress.
The Trump government issued decrees at the end of last year to withdraw the mandate, and they have been working since the start of the Trump presidency. As Vox explained earlier:
The regulations significantly extend the types of companies and organizations that can apply for an exception to this rule. This could result in many American women currently receiving free contraception having to pay for their medication out of pocket.
The new regulations allow large listed companies to demand exemption from birth control of religious persons or moral objection to such cover. The Obama administration banned such big companies from such exceptions.
The rulings represent a further loss of rights for President Donald Trump, whose government has aggressively sought to undo the ACA's provisions through regulations after Congress failed to repeal. The courts also blocked an earlier attempt to ease the birth control mandate and ruled that the administration had pushed regulations through the rulemaking process.