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Terminix fined $10 million for poisoning family

Termionix pays family for illnessesTerminix will pay $10 million for using an illegal pesticide in the U.S. Virgin Islands that almost killed a family last year, federal officials said.

The family of four from Delaware was vacationing in the U.S. Virgin Islands when they all became seriously ill after the living unit one floor below them was fumigated.


SCOTUS seeks new birth control policy

SCOTUSThe Supreme Court’s unexpected request for new arguments on Obamacare’s birth control coverage requirement Tuesday suggests that the court wants to come up with a compromise scenario for providing contraception to employees of religious nonprofits.

The court on Tuesday instructed the parties in Zubik v. Burwell to file new briefs on how employees could get the coverage through their employer-sponsored plans in a way that does not involve the nonprofits. The order came less than a week after the court heard oral arguments in the case, which addresses whether Obamacare’s birth control coverage requirement violates the nonprofits' religious beliefs.


New Utah law requires anesthesia for abortions after 20 weeks

Gary HerbertUtah now has a law on the books requiring doctors to give anesthesia to abortion patients 20 or more weeks into pregnancy in an effort to reduce pain felt by the fetus.

It is the first law of its kind in the United States, though whether a 20-week-old fetus can feel anything is disputed.

TVNL Comment: Once again, GOP legislators are making medical decisions for women.  Another ploy to make abortion more expensive and less accessible.


Drug company hikes price for end-of-life drug Seconal

Seconal price hikedThe 80-year-old drug Seconal, a once widely used sleeping pill now often prescribed as an end-of-life treatment, has doubled in price as laws go into effect in several states this year permitting terminally ill patients to take their own lives.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals, which is among companies being investigated by Congress for price gouging, doubled the price of Seconal last year from $1,500 to $3,000 after acquiring the rights to it.


State-by-State Strategy Wielded to Defund Planned Parenthood

Strategy to defund Planned ParenthoodThough congressional Republicans' bid to defund Planned Parenthood was vetoed by President Barack Obama, anti-abortion activists and politicians are achieving a growing portion of their goal with an aggressive state-by-state strategy.

Over the past year, more than a dozen states have sought to halt or reduce public funding for Planned Parenthood. Some of the efforts have been blocked by court action, but in other states the cutbacks are forcing Planned Parenthood to drop contraceptive services, health screenings and other programs serving thousands of low-income women.


Slew of anti-abortion laws may thwart Zika research

Anti abortion laws thwart Zika researchEven as mosquitoes carrying the Zika virus advance northward, lawmakers in 18 states are trying to block the fetal tissue research that might reveal the keys to unlocking the disease and preventing the massive birth defects associated with it.

The furor from the Planned Parenthood sting videos is driving the tide of bills, which range from outright bans on research using aborted tissue to prohibitions on tissue donations.


Florida governor signs law ending funding to clinics providing abortions

Rik ScottFlorida Governor Rick Scott on Friday signed a law that cuts off state funding for preventive health services to clinics providing abortion and imposes abortion restrictions already being tested before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Florida is among many states adopting new abortion laws as conservatives seek to chip away at the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion.


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