Abortion Bans Are Limiting What Some Doctors and Med Students Are Taught

The shortage of abortion providers is expected to worsen, post-Roe

By Ella Ceron
10 July 2022

Abortion care is one of the most common medical procedures in the US, yet even before the fall of Roe v. Wade, doctors and students had to navigate tricky legal and educational hurdles to train as abortion providers. With last month’s Supreme Court decision freeing states to ban abortions, those barriers are growing.

Some abortion advocates are warning that recent moves could aggravate the nationwide shortage of trained abortion providers, making the procedure scarcer — even in blue states that are acting to guarantee access — than first thought. 

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-07-10/abortion-bans-are-limiting-what-some-doctors-and-med-students-are-taught


Germany moves to reform abortion law

The government is following through on its pledge to decriminalize abortion. Officials plan to abolish a law that subjects doctors who publish information on abortion procedures to prosecution.

24.06.2022
Elizabeth Schumacher

"I really struggled to find information online," said Verena, who was 22 when she found herself dealing with an unwanted pregnancy. "There was no easy way to find out which doctors perform abortions, where they are or how the procedure is performed."

Abortion is illegal in Germany and punishable by up to three years in prison. But the women and their doctors do not face penalties if the pregnancy poses a health risk to the woman or in cases of rape. Otherwise, an abortion may be carried out within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy (14 weeks since the last period) after mandatory counseling. However, many barriers remain.

Continued: https://www.dw.com/en/germany-moves-to-reform-abortion-law/a-62014740


The Potential End of Roe Won’t Stop This Abortion Provider-in-Training

A recent medical school graduate reflects on the intersection of race and reproductive rights

By Christina Sturdivant Sani
May 11, 2022

Sherry Reddix is a 2022 graduate of Tufts University School of Medicine and a future abortion provider. She will be starting a residency in family medicine in California. This interview has been edited and condensed.

I’m from Mississippi, and my whole family is in the field of medicine. My aunt, uncle and father are all physicians, and my mom is a nurse. My uncle was actually nominated to the State Board of Health in Mississippi in 2012. Then his nomination was blocked because he served as the emergency on-call physician for the abortion clinic in Jackson, the clinic at the center of the current Supreme Court case. It was my senior year of high school, and my phone was blowing up with calls and texts. My grandma was like ‘Uncle Carl is on Rachel Maddow!’

Continued https://www.washingtonpost.com/magazine/2022/05/11/abortion-provider-in-training/


Standing strong: youth health workers from Benin share lessons from sexual and reproductive health and rights workshop

28 April 2022
FIGO Advocating for Safe Abortion Project

From 9–11 March 2022, in Cotonou, Benin, FIGO’s Advocating for Safe Abortion Project worked with the National College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Benin (CNGOB) to organise a capacity building workshop for their counterparts visiting from Mali alongside the Youth Health Workers for Safe Abortion (YHW4SA) – a Beninese network of young pro-choice health professionals set-up in 2021 by CNGOB.  

The group attending the workshop was made up of 15 members of the YHW4SA network and five members of the Malian Society of Gynaecology and Obstetrics (SOMAGO).  

The aim was to share knowledge and tools on Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) and on best practice to discuss abortion, in order to enable participants to address abortion stigma and strengthen access to safe abortion in their workplaces and wider communities.  

Continued: https://www.figo.org/news/youth-health-workers-benin-share-lessons-srhr-workshop


USA – Fewer medical students trained for abortion procedures

The number of med schools and residency programs where aspiring physicians can learn to perform abortion procedures continues to shrink.

March 22, 2022
By Sarah Varney

A barrage of abortion restrictions rippling across the country, from Florida to Texas to Idaho, is shrinking the already limited training options for U.S. medical students and residents who want to learn how to perform abortion procedures.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends standardized training on abortion care during medical residency, the training period after medical school that provides future physicians on-the-job experience in a particular specialty. But the number of residency programs located in states where hospital employees are prohibited from performing or teaching about abortion — or at Catholic-owned hospitals with similar bans — has skyrocketed in recent years, an overlooked byproduct of anti-abortion legislation taking root in the American South, Midwest, and Mountain states.

Continued: https://www.nbcnews.com/health/womens-health/fewer-medical-students-trained-abortion-procedures-rcna21003


USA – Amid abortion rights threat, OB-GYNs more vocal with support

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has been defending abortion in recent lawsuits challenging state restrictions

By TRAVIS LOLLER, Associated Press
8 March 2022

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- As the Supreme Court mulls whether to uphold Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists filed a brief against the state law, calling it “fundamentally at odds with the provision of safe and essential healthcare.”

But the organization’s support for abortion hasn’t always been unequivocal. After the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision guaranteed the right to abortion, American OB-GYNs remained divided on the issue. Many declined to perform elective abortions either out of moral opposition or because they wanted to avoid the “butcher” stigma that still clung to abortion doctors from the pre-Roe days.

Continued: https://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/amid-abortion-rights-threat-ob-gyns-vocal-support-83319403


USA – In Medicine, a Lack of Courage Has Helped Put Roe in Jeopardy

Jan. 21, 2022
By Eyal Press

This Saturday marks the 49th, and quite possibly the last, anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion in every state. Roe’s precarious future can be attributed to various factors: the tenacity of the anti-abortion movement, the addition of three conservative justices to the court during Donald Trump’s presidency, the opportunities that pro-choice advocates may have missed. But if, as is widely expected, the Supreme Court upholds a Mississippi statute that bans most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy and overturns or guts Roe later this year, I will be thinking about something else: not the legal precedent, but the role that lawlessness and terrorism — and the medical community’s response to it — played in hastening Roe’s demise.

The act of terrorism that particularly haunts me took place on Oct. 23, 1998. That evening, an obstetrician-gynecologist named Barnett Slepian was standing in the kitchen of his home in Amherst, N.Y., a suburb of Buffalo, when a sniper’s bullet struck him in the back. He collapsed to the floor and, within a few hours, was pronounced dead. At the time, Dr. Slepian was one of three abortion providers in the Greater Buffalo area. One of the others was my father, Shalom Press, an obstetric gynecologist who performed abortions on certain days in his private practice.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/21/opinion/roe-v-wade-abortion-doctors-violence.html


Why Can Canadian Doctors Still Deny Access To Abortion—And Other Healthcare?

The practice of conscientious objection means doctors can refuse or deflect requests for a variety of services, including abortion—and in many provinces, they're not even obligated to provide a referral.

Tracey Lindeman
Updated July 22, 2021

Chantal had already performed all the mental gymnastics.

About eight years ago, the then-23-year-old woman from southern Alberta had accidentally become pregnant, and weighed her options. She settled on having an abortion, the best choice for her in that moment of her life. She booked an appointment with her doctor, one of only a small handful in her community, to request a referral—a requirement in Alberta then. When the time came to meet, she sat in his office and laid her cards out.

Continued: https://www.chatelaine.com/opinion/canadian-doctors-deny-access-to-abortion/


Anti-Reproductive Rights Doctors Are Promoting a Treatment to “Reverse” Abortion

BY Claire Provost, openDemocracy
PUBLISHED March 28, 2021

Doctors in at least a dozen countries, supported by U.S. Christian Right activists, are providing women with a “dangerous” and controversial treatment that claims to “reverse” medical abortions, openDemocracy can reveal today.

Women’s health and rights activists have called for urgent investigation by authorities into these findings – which were described as “horrific” especially during the pandemic when it’s critical for people to trust healthcare providers.

Continued:  https://truthout.org/articles/anti-reproductive-rights-doctors-are-promoting-a-treatment-to-reverse-abortion/


Revealed: Doctors worldwide offer ‘dangerous’ treatment to ‘reverse’ abortions

Health experts call for action from regulators to protect women from spread of controversial method supported by US Christian right activists

Claire Provost
25 March 2021

Doctors in at least a dozen countries, supported by US Christian Right activists, are providing women with a “dangerous” and controversial treatment that claims to “reverse” medical abortions, openDemocracy can reveal today.

Women’s health and rights activists have called for urgent investigation by authorities into these findings – which were described as “horrific” especially during the pandemic when it’s critical for people to trust healthcare providers.

Continued: https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/5050/revealed-doctors-offer-dangerous-treatment-to-reverse-abortions/