- Twenty-two million women have no access to abortion in their state.
- This is causing pressure on states that do allow abortion, where the wait time for an appointment is growing.
- New data shows that at least 66 abortion clinics have shut down since the overturning of Roe v. Wade.
New data from the Guttmacher Institute, a leading research and policy organization committed to advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights, shows the impact of abortion care in 15 states across the USA.
In these states, there are 22 million women — 29% of all US women of reproductive age, defined as those aged between 15 and 49 — with virtually no abortion option in their state, says the report.
Of the 15 states considered in the analysis, 14 offer no abortion care.
The one that does, Georgia, bans abortion after six weeks, a point at which very few people even know they’re pregnant.
The report also found that at least 66 abortion clinics have closed down across 15 states since the overturning of Roe v. Wade.
The Guttmacher Institute states that 14 states where abortion is currently unavailable accounted for 125,780 abortions in 2020.
As a result of these widespread closures, states that permit abortions are struggling to support patients who need them, with clinics in Illinois — a state which borders two states with total bans and three with restrictions — having a three-week wait time for termination, according to NPR.
The number of states which currently ban abortion is only set to grow, with further analysis from the institute predicting that, in total, 26 states are certain or likely to deny abortion post-Roe.
What is the impact of abortion bans?
It has been over three months since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. In June, The Supreme Court on Friday overturned Roe v. Wade in a 5-4 majority opinion that guts federal abortion rights protections previously upheld by the nearly 50-year-old landmark ruling.
Since then, the repercussions of the sudden imposition of abortion bans by states have often been heart-wrenching and caught people in the crossfire of the abortion debate.
As a result of the numerous clinic closures across the US, many women have been forced to travel across state lines to have an abortion. One woman told Insider how difficult this was on her financially, emotionally, and practically, and she was targeted by a fake abortion clinic.
In July, Insider reported how many autoimmune patients were collateral damage from the bans as they lost easy access to a drug called methotrexate.
The drug helps people with autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, but it is also — at very high doses — used to treat ectopic pregnancies and cause abortions and pharmacists have become reluctant to prescribe it to women.
Recently, Ohio’s looming abortion ban was challenged in court by various health professionals and activists who shared the impact of the abortion bans.
The court documents tell of harrowing stories of victims of incestuous rape being denied abortions, as well as a late-stage cancer patient who was denied treatment until she had an abortion, even though it was banned in her state.