Overturning Roe v Wade would be an unprecedented attack on the bodily autonomy of women, girls, and pregnant people

BMJ 2022; 377 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.o1019 (Published 21 April 2022)
Terry McGovern, Harriet and Robert H. Heilbrunn professor and chair

Any erosion of Roe v Wade will have devastating health outcomes that are likely to widen existing healthcare inequalities, says Terry McGovern

This year Americans’ right to access abortion hangs in the balance, but the scales seem tipped against it. The statements put forward by the majority of the US Supreme Court in the Dobbs v Mississippi case, a direct challenge to Roe v Wade, indicate that they are likely to overturn or seriously curtail this almost 50 years’ old legal precedent. In anticipation of this ruling, Oklahoma passed a near total ban of abortion earlier this month, making it a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $100 000. Despite the US having majority public support for preserving the rights of pregnant people to seek an abortion,1 the Supreme Court looks likely to revoke this constitutional right in June. Continued: https://www.bmj.com/content/377/bmj.o1019