The states and municipalities have said the rule could undermine their ability to provide effective healthcare, and upend their efforts to accommodate workers' beliefs.
"The refusal of care rule was an unlawful attempt to allow health care providers to openly discriminate and refuse to provide necessary health care to patients based on providers" "religious beliefs or moral objections, '" New York Attorney General Letitia James, who led the groups, said in a statement Wednesday.
U.S. District Judge Paul Engelmayer in Manhattan said the "conscience" rule was unconstitutionally coercive because it would let the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) withhold billions of dollars of funding from hospitals, clinics, universities and other healthcare providers that did not comply.
Engelmayer said his ruling came in three consolidated lawsuits.More news: Unidentified foreign drone shot down in Iran
The Trump administration, Engelmayer concludes, also issued the rule in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Emergency Medical Treatment & Labor Act with respect to health care employment and emergency contexts. It would have allowed individuals, entities, or health providers to refuse care to anyone if they found a religious objection to it.
"It's time for the Trump-Pence administration to stop trying to dismantle the policies that help keep people healthy and safe", she said in a statement.
"In all events, far from reflecting a "significant increase" in complaints implicating the Conscience Provisions as claimed by HHS, the administrative record reflects either no increase at all, or that any increase was so small as to be asymptotic to zero", Engelmayer writes. "Protecting conscience and religious freedom not only fosters greater diversity in health care, it's the law".
The ruling came right after wellbeing businesses and other people sued the U.S. Section of Health and fitness and Human Companies.More news: Microsoft Looks Beyond Its Cloud with Azure Arc for Mixed Workloads
Jamie Gliksberg, a senior attorney with the LGBT group Lambda Legal, said the decision against the rule "has likely saved countless lives".
Plaintiffs challenging the rule included Chicago and Washington, D.C., as well as Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, states where Trump prevailed in the 2016 presidential election. "The denial of care rule was deeply rooted in animus against some of our most marginalized and vulnerable communities, and that has no place in our society".
The implementation of the rule was originally scheduled for July 22, but was pushed back four months after lawsuits.
This happened just one week to the day after Judge William Alsup of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco heard oral arguments in lawsuits from the State of California, San Francisco, and Santa Clara County asking that the rule be struck down as illegal under numerous state and federal laws, including the U.S. Constitution, as the Bay Area Reporter previously reported.More news: Aston Martin DBX: More Details Drop Before Full Reveal