ST. LOUIS — A St. Louis judge has granted a preliminary injunction, allowing Missouri’s last abortion clinic to stay open for now.
The clinic, Reproductive Health Services of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region, is suing the state’s health department for refusing to renew its license, which was set to expire at the end of May.
The Planned Parenthood clinic challenged the attempt to revoke its license.
Judge Michael Stelzer issued a temporary reprieve on May 31, preventing the license from expiring until he heard arguments from both sides last week.
Then on Monday, he issued the temporary injunction, letting the St. Louis clinic continue its operations for now.
Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services must make a decision on the clinic’s license by June 21. A court hearing is set for that date.
The state’s health director says the clinic has “issues,” but he initially refused to specify what those issues were.
Then on Friday, the department said some patients were unaware that they remained pregnant after what the agency described as “failed surgical abortions.” Those concerns and other concerns about patient safety, the agency said, led them to consider not renewing the clinic’s license.
If the St. Louis clinic is ultimately closed, Missouri may become the first state in the country with no abortion clinics.