Wyoming Banned Abortion. She Opened an Abortion Clinic Anyway.

The only abortion clinic left in the state has been protested and set on fire, rebuilt and opened as Wyoming grapples with what it means to be conservative in a post-Roe nation.

By Kate Zernike, NYT
March 10, 2024

It was not such an implausible idea, back in 2020, when a philanthropist emailed Julie Burkhart to ask if she would consider opening an abortion clinic in Wyoming, one of the nation’s most conservative states and the one that had twice given Donald Trump his biggest margin of victory.

In fact, Ms. Burkhart had the same idea more than a decade earlier, after an anti-abortion extremist killed her boss and mentor, George Tiller, in Wichita, Kan., where he ran one of the nation’s few clinics that provided abortion late in pregnancy.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2024/03/10/us/wyoming-abortion-clinic-julie-burkhart.html

‘Disproven and unsupportable’: Kansas judge blocks junk science abortion restrictions

The ruling called the long-standing “Women’s Right to Know Act” an attempt to discourage abortion seekers

OCTOBER 30, 2023

TOPEKA — A Kansas judge on Monday blocked a combination of long-standing and newly implemented abortion restrictions in the state in what abortion providers described as a “hard-fought” win against “ethically unjustifiable” misinformation.

Johnson County District Judge Krishnan Christopher Jayaram ruled against several abortion requirements set out  in the “Women’s Right to Know Act,” patchwork legislation enacted over the past two decades that uses medically inaccurate information to dictate abortion restrictions.

Continued: https://kansasreflector.com/2023/10/30/disproven-and-unsupportable-kansas-judge-blocks-junk-science-abortion-restrictions/

Kansas abortion provider counters ‘devastation’ inflicted by restrictions on out-of-state patients

New podcast episode: Emily Wales, CEO of Planned Parenthood Great Plains, discusses challenges of Kansas’ abortion landscape

Rachel Mipro
Aug 28, 2023

OVERLAND PARK — One mirrored building wall of the Planned Parenthood Great Plains office is covered with a painted uterus, with flowers drawn on the side and and a fist in the middle, punching up at a sunflower. Next to it is a slogan, bearing the phrase in giant words, “Thank you Kansas Voters!”

Look at either of these images too long, or take pictures of it, and out comes a security guard, ready to make sure the observer doesn’t harbor ill intent.

Continued: https://kansasreflector.com/2023/08/28/kansas-abortion-provider-counters-devastation-inflicted-by-restrictions-on-out-of-state-patients/

One year ago, Kansas made history. The fight to protect abortion rights isn’t over.

Rachel Sweet
AUGUST 2, 2023

When I woke up before dawn on the morning of Aug. 2, 2022, I could feel the energy. In the 40 days since Roe v. Wade was overturned, our staff and hundreds of volunteers had redoubled our efforts and vowed to leave nothing to chance. We knocked on tens of thousands of doors, made hundreds of thousands of phone calls, and worked to ensure Kansans would show up in droves on Election Day.

As the manager for the “vote no” campaign, I’d seen the momentum build to a fever pitch in the weeks ahead of the primary election. Following the leaked decision in May and then the Dobbs decision in June, Kansans were registering to vote, coming out to volunteer, showing up to phone bank, and voting early. The excitement was palpable. We could feel that we were on the brink of something monumental, win or lose.

Continued: https://kansasreflector.com/2023/08/02/one-year-ago-kansas-made-history-the-fight-to-protect-abortion-rights-isnt-over/

The doctors bringing abortion care from SF General to Wichita

JULY 27, 2023

A 19-year-old girl walks up to the clinic’s front desk, a couple of her friends trailing behind. Everyone is yawning after the eight-hour overnight drive from eastern Arkansas to Wichita, Kansas. After a wait, the woman is ushered into a private room and greeted by Dr. Jennifer Kerns, an abortion provider, who relays the encounter.

Kerns, too, arrived that morning after an eight-hour journey of her own, via several flights from San Francisco to Kansas.

Continued: https://missionlocal.org/2023/07/the-doctors-bringing-abortion-care-from-san-francisco-general-to-wichita/

‘It’s Not Just the Fringe Who Are Committing These Violent Acts’

By Sarah Jones, senior writer for Intelligencer
June 11, 2023

In April, abortion provider Julie Burkhart opened her newest clinic, Wellspring Health Access, in Casper, Wyoming. Wellspring is the only clinic to provide surgical abortions in the state, and its opening had been delayed for months because an anti-abortion activist allegedly set fire to it while it was under construction. As a former employee of Dr. George Tiller, who was assassinated in 2009, Burkhart has seen the anti-abortion movement at its most violent and remains determined to provide abortion care. Though the future for abortion rights in Wyoming looks uncertain, Wellspring is taking appointments and providing a full range of reproductive-health services to people in Casper and the surrounding area. While the clinic provides care, it also fights to keep abortion legal in Wyoming. Attorneys for Wellspring have joined a group of plaintiffs challenging two recent anti-abortion laws in Wyoming: One would ban medication abortion and is set to take effect in July, and the other is a near-total abortion ban, which is on hold as litigation proceeds.

I spoke with Burkhart about her work, the future of Wellspring, and the importance of providing abortion care in rural areas and Republican-led states like Wyoming. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Continued:  https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2023/06/people-of-all-walks-need-access-to-abortion-care.html

Hospitals in Two States Denied an Abortion to a Miscarrying Patient. Investigators Say They Broke Federal Law.

Doctors told her she might die but she couldn’t have an abortion under state law until she got sicker, documents show. The Biden administration says failing to act violates a federal law requiring hospitals to provide emergency care.

by Kavitha Surana
May 19, 2023

Mylissa Farmer knew her fetus was dying inside of her. Her water broke less than 18 weeks into her pregnancy last August, and she was desperate for an abortion.

But according to federal documents, during three emergency room visits over two days in Missouri and Kansas, doctors repeatedly gave Farmer the same chilling message: Though there was virtually no chance her fetus would survive and the pregnancy was putting her at high risk for life-threatening complications, there was nothing they could do for her.

Continued: https://www.propublica.org/article/two-hospitals-denied-abortion-miscarrying-patient-breaking-federal-law

Abortion clinics in 3 states sue to protect pill access

Abortion providers in three states filed a lawsuit Monday aimed at preserving access to the widely used abortion pill mifepristone

May 8, 2023

Abortion providers in three states filed a lawsuit Monday aimed at preserving access to the abortion pill mifepristone, even as the drug is threatened by a separate Texas lawsuit winding its way through U.S. court system.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Virginia on behalf of clinics in Virginia, Montana and Kansas, is the latest legal action over the decades-old pill, which is part of the two-drug regimen used in most U.S. abortions.

Continued: https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/abortion-clinics-3-states-sue-protect-pill-access-99181828

Legal abortions in the U.S. dropped 6% after Roe fell, despite an uptick in states with protections

By Farah Yousry / Side Effects Public Media
April 28, 2023

Some days, the phones at the Trust Women Wichita clinic ring nonstop, and staff are unable to keep up. Since the U.S. Supreme Court ended federal protections for abortion last summer, the clinic has had a math problem: too many patients desperate for care with limited time and resources to see them.

“We are averaging about 500 patients a month, give or take,” said Ashley Brink, a clinic director at Trust Women Wichita. “We're located in Kansas, but we only see about 100 patients a month that are actually from Kansas, the other 400-plus are from other states.”

Continued: https://nebraskapublicmedia.org/en/news/news-articles/legal-abortions-in-the-us-dropped-6-after-roe-fell-despite-an-uptick-in-states-with-protections/

USA – Volunteer pilots fly patients seeking abortions to states where it’s legal

March 27, 2023
By Rose Conlon, NPR for Wichita

The pilot, clad in a blue windbreaker, recently pulled his single-engine, four-seater prop plane onto the tarmac of a small municipal airport.

The airport sits in a state where abortion is now banned in virtually all cases. But a short flight away in Kansas, abortion remains legal. That has launched a wave of travel from across the South and Midwest in pursuit of pills and procedures that used to be legal all across the U.S..