OBGYNs say they are bracing themselves for a surge of out-of-state abortion seekers post Roe v. Wade and fear working class patients will be left behind

·3 min read
OBGYNs say they are bracing themselves for a surge of out-of-state abortion seekers post Roe v. Wade and fear working class patients will be left behind
  • On Friday, SCOTUS overturned Roe v. Wade, allowing states to create their own abortion laws and restricting a person's right to an abortion.

  • Reproductive health doctors told Insider they fear for patients' physical and mental health.

  • In states where abortion remains protected, OBGYNs expect a surge in patients coming from more restrictive states.

Reproductive health doctors are reacting to the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that allowed people to seek abortions with limited government intervention.

On Friday, Justice Samuel Alito delivered his opinion on the case Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health, saying he favored the state of Mississippi in the case. Now, Roe v. Wade, which allowed abortion until about 24 weeks of pregnancy, is overruled, and individual states have the power to decide their residents' abortion rights.

OBGYNs who provide abortion care and family-planning services told Insider they worry for their patients' health and safety, and the future of all reproductive healthcare including miscarriages, fertility treatments, and birth control.

"This decision made by the SCOTUS is one that completely obliterates freedom from reproductive justice and women's health directly," Dr. Jessica Shepherd, a Texas-based gynecologist and Chief Medical Officer at Verywell Health, told Insider.

Dr. Stephanie Ros, a Florida-based OBGYN, says she fears most for working-class abortion seekers.

"I'm not worried about my wealthy patients – they will have the means to go 'visit an aunt' in Europe or elsewhere, and access abortion care if they so desire. I'm terrified for my middle class and poor patients, who don't have the means to pick up and travel on a moment's notice, and who often don't have access to medical care to even discover they're pregnant until later than their wealthy counterparts," Ros told Insider.

According to Ros, a lack of access to pre-birth medical care in a post-Roe world could also cause more expecting parents to miss "a tragic fetal anomaly" that's only discoverable in the second or third trimesters. Since existing and upcoming abortion bans could eliminate a person's right to an abortion that late in pregnancy,  "these infants who will now be carried to term have to suffer from these illnesses," Ros said.

Gynecologist Dr. Jennifer Lincoln, who practices in Oregon, is bracing for her state to become overwhelmed with out-of-state patients seeking abortions.

"This will take a toll financially and physically for providers. And we will help them, but it will be a new challenge," Lincoln said. She worries people will die if they're forced to give birth or seek unsafe abortions.

Lincoln was hosting a TikTok Live video while awaiting the SCOTUS decision, but had to end it abruptly when they overturned Roe v. Wade.

"I was, and am, gutted. I had to end it because I couldn't keep going," she said.

Read the original article on Insider

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