After finishing the day watching the patient at his doctor’s clinic in Camden on Thursday evening, Dr. Maya Bass boarded the plane and flew to Oklahoma. There she spends the next 48 hours providing abortion to women at one of the four clinics in the state, about 130 miles north of the Texas border.
Bass has been traveling to Oklahoma for many years and stays there one or two days a month to serve the Trust Women Foundation Clinic in Oklahoma City. She lived and practiced in Oklahoma full time. When she returned to the East Coast where she grew up, she wanted to continue to provide abortion care in less accessible areas than New Jersey. Demand in Oklahoma has only increased since neighboring Texas enacted a six-week abortion ban and Texas people with unwanted pregnancies began crossing state boundaries to get an abortion, she said. Said.
“I’m always impressed with the resilience of patients,” says Bass. “Especially because many of them came from Texas and drove for 2, 4, 6, 8, and even 10 hours. Sometimes they even took care of those who had to fly.”
If the Roe v. Wade case is overturned, it is likely that the Supreme Court signaled during the oral argument on Wednesday, so it is up to each state to decide whether the abortion is legal. At least 22 states have laws on books that are likely to ban abortion if Roe capsizes.
Just as Oklahoma has been a destination for abortion treatment since the Texas ban, demand may skyrocket in other states that continue to allow abortions and border new bans. .. Pennsylvania is one of those states.
New Jersey has some of the country’s least restrictive abortion laws and does not have a direct border with the state that loses access.
That’s why it’s still so important for buses to provide abortion care in hard-to-find places. Every two days of stints in Oklahoma, she will see 40 patients a day and has a waiting list. There is also a shortage of providers. Bass said that almost every abortion provider in the clinic she works for is jumping from outside the state, just like her. At some point when she lived there, I remembered that she was actually one of the two abortion providers who lived and practiced in Oklahoma.
Part of the reason the bus chose to return to the East Coast is that Oklahoma proved a hostile environment for abortion providers.
“The idea that protesters would come to my doctor’s clinic when I lived in Oklahoma so that patients there wouldn’t feel comfortable looking at me seems to be a real concern. I did, “she said. “Not to mention the safety of my family.”
Oklahoma is one of the so-called trigger states. This means that if Law overthrows and wants to continue the abortion, Bus and his colleagues will have to relocate.
New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware aren’t in a triggered state, but that doesn’t mean they don’t feel the impact — especially Pennsylvania.
According to a recent report from the Guttmacher Institute, the number of people seeking abortion in Pennsylvania is estimated to increase by more than 1,000% if Roe capsizes, from the current 170,000 to 2.1 million annually. .. This is because access to abortion is severely restricted as soon as Roe capsizes in both neighboring Ohio and West Virginia.
Ohio has passed a six-week ban on abortion, which is no longer valid, but is designed to have an abortion when Roe capsizes. For 70% of Ohio women, Pennsylvania is the closest unbanned state.
West Virginia banned abortion prior to the Roe v. Wade case, so if the decision goes down, that state’s law could come into force there again. The report estimates that Pennsylvania will be the closest state without banning 40% of West Virginia women.
And there is no guarantee that Pennsylvania will continue to be a safe haven for access to abortion. Currently, Pennsylvania law limits miscarriage after 24 weeks. This is a “survival rate” criterion that indicates how long a foetation can survive outside the womb. The state has already imposed many additional important restrictions on access to abortion, including banning the use of public funds, including Medicaid, for the treatment of abortion.
If Pennsylvania elects a Republican governor in 2022, the Commonwealth may see more restrictive legislation enacted. Democratic Governor Tom Wolf has repeatedly rejected legislation that further restricts access to Pennsylvania’s Republican-controlled House of Representatives and Senate.
Bass said her team at the clinic was discussing expansion at the clinic in Wichita, Kansas, as they were forced to stop practicing in Oklahoma. However, she is worried that by reducing the number of clinics and increasing the distance required, even if a patient has an abortion, she may have to wait longer. Abortion is primarily a safe medical procedure, but Bass is worried that those disorders will only help make it more dangerous.
“This is a patient safety issue due to making abortion illegal,” she said. “We are actually exacerbating patient outcomes and there is no medical evidence for why. It is one of the hardest to see.”
This article first appeared WHYY.org..
Pennsylvania could be a destination for abortion if Roe capsizes | States and Regions
Source link Pennsylvania could be a destination for abortion if Roe capsizes | States and Regions