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Texas court rules Planned Parenthood can be removed from state’s Medicaid program

A Texas judge has ruled that low-income patients in the state starting Thursday can no longer use Medicaid to get non-abortion health services at Planned Parenthood.

The judge’s ruling follows a Texas court decision Wednesday saying the state could move forward with removing the health provider from its Medicaid program, according to the Texas Tribune.

The decision leaves thousands of patients with “few places to turn,” Planned Parenthood said.

The decision is also the latest in state officials’ years-long effort to cut off Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sided with the state last year and health officials told Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid patients they had until early February to find new doctors. But the health provider filed an emergency lawsuit saying the state had not followed the proper procedures.

“Innocent lives will be saved,” Texas GOP Gov. Gregg Abbott tweeted the decision to Planned Parenthood from Medicaid was announced.