By: Anna Boyd
Abortion laws in the United States have been continuously argued for years. In the past year alone, many states have reopened the biggest case in the abortion battle, Roe vs. Wade. The Supreme Court made its decision in 1973 regarding this case, regulating the circumstances that a person could obtain an abortion.
One requirement is that a physician must perform this procedure in a hospital. In 38 states a licensed physician must perform the surgery. In 19 states it must be done in a hospital. In 17 states a second physician is required after a specified point prior to seeing the first doctor.
Many states also have a gestational limit. In 43 states abortions are prohibited after a specific point of the pregnancy. This is to protect the mother in the procedure.
16 different states provide funding to pay for all to most medically necessary abortions. 33 states and Washington D.C. prohibit state funds except in specific cases where federal funds are available, these are only cases where the abortion is medically needed, or the pregnancy is a result of rape or incest.
45 states allow health care providers to refuse participation in an abortion. 42 states allow a medical institution to refuse to perform the procedure while 16 states only allow refusal for private or religious reasons.
Some states require mandated counseling before the abortion can be performed. Patients must attend at least one of three counseling services, the link between abortion and breast cancer, the ability of the fetus to feel pain, or long-term mental health consequences.
This year specifically Idaho, Texas, Oklahoma, and South Carolina have enacted bans that a woman cannot receive an abortion once a fetal heartbeat is heard. This is usually way before a woman even knows she is pregnant. This decision is being challenged in courts to this day.
These same states have also issued bills that would take the medical license away of any person that performed an abortion.
In conclusion, this fight has no end in sight for the women of America. States are always going to disagree with the decisions of the supreme court. The Women’s Health Protection Act which prevents restrictive laws on women is blatantly being ignored. Women need to be able to trust that the policymakers are going to support them and their decisions but that trust is gone.