Associated Press in Indianapolis
guardian.co.uk, Sunday 8 July 2012 19.31 BST
Indiana's decision to deny Planned Parenthood funds under Medicaid because it performs abortions denies women the freedom to choose their healthcare providers, a federal hearing officer has determined.
The state had asked the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in Chicago to reconsider its June 2011 ruling that found changes in Indiana's Medicaid plan unacceptable.
But a hearing officer recommended in documents released Friday that a CMS administrator uphold the agency's initial decision.
The changes to Indiana's plan resulted from a 2011 law that would have made the state the first to deny the organisation Medicaid funds for general health services, including cancer screenings. The law has been on hold while the dispute works its way through the courts.