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Abortion providers shift practices as states enact bans

Updated June 25, 2022 at 11:43 AM ET

While the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade as of Friday, abortion providers in some states already had a preview of a post-Roe world.

When Texas' law restricting abortions took effect last year, the Trust Women clinic in Oklahoma City doubled the number of days a week it provided abortions, according to Dr. Maya Bass. Even so, many pregnant people had to wait, to save money for a longer trip or to get off the waitlist.

"So we're seeing people who are later in pregnancy. We're seeing people who are sicker," said Bass.

This May, Oklahoma banned almost all abortions.

The clinic shut down. Once again, providers shifted to expand appointments elsewhere — this time, in Kansas, where abortion remains legal.

Abortion funds and clinics also started doing more outreach and education. In some states, pills that induce an abortion are available by mail. Providers expanded efforts to counsel patients over the phone about where to get them and how to use them.

"In a lot of ways, this is going to look different than before Roe. But if people don't know about [medication abortion], they might try other less safe options," said Bass.

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Laura Benshoff
Laura Benshoff is a reporter covering energy and climate on a temporary basis for NPR's National desk. Prior to this assignment, she spent eight years at WHYY, Philadelphia's NPR Member station. There, she most recently focused on the economy and immigration. She has reported on the causes of the Great Resignation, Afghans left behind after the U.S. troop withdrawal and how a government-backed rent-to-own housing program failed its tenants. Other highlights from her time at WHYY include exploring the dynamics of the 2020 presidential election cycle through changing communities in central Pennsylvania and covering comedian Bill Cosby's criminal trials.