The ruling by a three-judge panel of the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals stays a lower judge's ruling and allows Texas to put into effect restrictions that were part of its abortion law passed last year and pushed by Republican Gov. Rick Perry.
The Texas' attorney general's office called the decision "vindication'' for the Texas law, which Perry and other Lone Star conservatives say is designed to protect women's health.
The Center for Reproductive Rights, an abortion rights group that challenged the Texas law, denounced the decision and said it was considering legal options.
The ruling gave Texas permission to require all abortion clinics in the state to meet the same building, equipment and staffing standards as hospital-style surgical centers, standards that abortion providers said were unnecessary and costly, but that the state argued improved patient safety.
It all depends on who you consider the patient. If a baby is born alive during an abortion procedure who must the facility be prepared to treat as the primary patient? Mom or baby?