© 2023 University of Missouri - KBIA
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Groups Press Walgreens on Religious Restrictions in Clinics

Wikimedia Commons

Four groups led by the American Civil Liberties Union are asking Walgreens for reassurance that the drugstore's partnership with a Catholic system to run in-store clinics in the St. Louis area won't limit access to birth control.

SSM Health, a St. Louis-based Catholic system, owns 27 clinics in Walgreens stores in Missouri and Illinois. The clinics open later this month.

The ACLU letter says SSM Health follows restrictions on contraceptives enforced by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. The letter echoes concerns in Oregon and Washington over a similar deal between Providence Health and Walgreens.

Walgreens referred questions to SSM Health, whose spokesman Jason Merrill says the clinics will continue normal services and patients requiring care "beyond the scope of what is appropriate for a retail clinic" will be referred elsewhere.

The Associated Press is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, it's a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members.