What You Need To Know
In 2022, there was a landslide law overturned in the US, Roe vs. Wade.
This has led to an array of abortion bans in the USA, meaning that reproductive healthcare has become messy and complicated for many people who are looking to seek it out.
So, if you are looking to access a termination in the US in 2023, read on, as this article will break down the complicated legal jargon so you will be able to make sense of the restrictions that are in place.
States Where Abortion Is Now Illegal
Abortion has been made illegal from conception in 11 states.
This includes Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas. However, this does not mean that women (at this time) cannot access abortions if they live in these states in the US. They will simply need to visit a state where abortion is not illegal or to attend an abortion clinic Sydney to have their pregnancy terminated. At the present time, there is no restriction on traveling to or from states to have an abortion.
Counselling and Waiting Periods
For an abortion to be performed, the person seeking the abortion has to be able to give informed consent. The undertaking of an abortion also has to be performed without duress.
In many states, there is a requirement for pre-abortion counseling to take place. As suggested, if you do not attend this counseling, you will not be able to have an abortion. Current states that offer this include Georgia and Florida. There is then a waiting period of 24 hours between the counseling session and the abortion, allowing the person seeking the abortion to be able to change their mind.
The aforementioned states have made it illegal to have an abortion from conception, meaning that unless there are health risks posed to the mother, an abortion cannot be performed.
However, for other states in the US, such as Florida, abortions are still legal, provided that the pregnancy is between 6-18 weeks. After this, it is illegal. In states such as Ohio and New York, abortions are legal for up to 22 weeks.
At the time of writing, September 2023, access to the medical abortion pill called mifepristone is not restricted.
However, the Supreme Court is under pressure to review this part of abortion law this coming October, with many states wanting mifepristone banned from being sent in the mail. That way, the only way someone who is aiming to end their pregnancy can get hold of this medication is to attend a consultation in a state where abortion is legal and go through the process there. At the current time, this medication is available for dispensing via teleassessments, even though there are many restrictions in place to prevent this option from occurring.
If this ruling is overturned in the majority of states in the US, women will need to access it before they are six weeks pregnant. This can be problematic, as this may mean traveling to another state and spending a period of time there while the medical procedure is performed, which many women cannot afford to do.