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Effects of abortion ban, report says

Natasha Kumar By Natasha Kumar Mar20,2024

The effects of the ban on abortion, report says

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Employees at a clinic that performs abortions in Shreveport, Louisiana, in April 2022 .

Agence France-Presse

Terrified practitioners, American women unable to see a doctor before their 12th week of pregnancy and, sometimes, cesarean sections instead of a traditional abortion: a report on Louisiana, published Tuesday, shows how Abortion bans affect pregnant women.

Four organizations, including the Center for Reproductive Rights and Physicians for Human Rights, conducted a survey of practitioners and patients in this conservative state in the southern United States from May to November 2023. , one of the most restrictive in terms of voluntary termination of pregnancy.

Louisiana has banned almost all abortions since the Court Supreme Court of the United States canceled the federal guarantee of abortion in the summer of 2022. The question of abortion must weigh heavily on the presidential election in November, which should, barring any surprises, oppose Democrat Joe Biden to Republican Donald Trump.

In their report, the organizations warn that Louisiana's abortion exceptions are narrow and poorly defined and cause fear and confusion among patients and their doctors.

The threat of punitive measures against clinicians undermines the quality of care […] and undermines their ability to use their medical judgment, denounces the text.

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ELSE ON INFO: A single trial for the nine alleged victims of Gilbert Rozon< p class="StyledBodyHtmlParagraph-sc-48221190-4 hnvfyV">One of the specialists interviewed recounts that a patient with a heart problem, aggravated by her pregnancy, had to try several treatments before the doctors dared to mention the option of an abortion. /p>

However, she was very ill […]. And I was like, "What if she doesn't want to wait that long because she might have a heart attack and die?" I don't know. When can you act? How many medications must fail? he said, quoted in the study.

Another consequence for some pregnant women was being refused an examination during the first 12 weeks of their pregnancy, when miscarriages are more common, according to the text. Establishments fear having to manage a health problem that would require an abortion and exposing themselves to prosecution.

A pregnant woman who had miscarriages in the past says in the report that she tried to make an appointment with several doctors, without success.

When I& #x27;asked why […], [I] was told bluntly: "The ban on abortion is new. We're still figuring out how to adapt to it,' she described.

However, examinations during the first trimester can be crucial, especially to detect abnormalities.

Another even more striking consequence: Citing practitioners, the report says that in some cases of life-threatening complications, if an abortion is performed, clinicians more frequently resort to […] a cesarean section, an invasive surgery used to give birth of a fetus or baby by abdominal incision, instead of a classic abortion.

And this, in order to avoid any suspicion of abortion, said an emergency doctor cited in the study.

Practitioners have the impression that they are abandoning their patients, Michele Heisler, co-author of the text, who conducted several interviews, told AFP. They are prevented from fulfilling their obligations in matters of medicine, ethics and human rights. they are prosecuted, they risk 10 to 15 years in prison and a fine of US$100,000 to US$200,000.

In addition, Louisiana is a state where even before the Supreme Court decision, there was a lot of bullying, adds Dr. Heisler, herself a medical professor.

Summarizing the report's recommendations, Karla Torres of the Center for Reproductive Rights urges Louisiana officials to urgently fulfill their human rights obligations by repealing bans on x27;abortion in the State.

These restrictions are not tenable, adds Michele Heisler. Already, many clinicians we spoke to are considering leaving the state.

Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my 1-800-268-7116

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