Maps: See how abortion access has shifted in 2 years since Roe was overturned

Returning abortion laws to the states has shifted access considerably.

June 23, 2024, 6:00 AM

Access to abortion care has changed significantly in the two years since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, ending federal protections for abortion rights.

At least 14 states have ceased nearly all abortion services, while seven others have restrictions in place limiting access to care.

While most bans and restrictions include exceptions, doctors across the country told ABC News it is is still incredibly difficult to provide patients with necessary care in medical emergencies and fatal fetal anomalies. Exceptions vary by state and the language in laws can often be inexact.

A recent court decision in Florida caused a six-week abortion ban to go into effect, bringing restrictions down from 15 weeks, and severely restricting access to abortion care for women across the South.

A ballot initiative in Florida could restore access to abortion care by amending the state's constitution to enshrine protections for abortion rights -- if more than 60% of voters support it.

Voters in November will also be asked about enshrining abortion protections in Colorado, Maryland and South Dakota, and more are working to add the question.

Voters across the country, even in conservative states like Kansas, have voted in favor of abortion rights every time the question has appeared on ballots since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe.

Despite prohibiting abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy -- with limited exceptions -- North Carolina has been seeing an increase in women seeking abortion care in the state. One physician told ABC News that the number of abortions performed at his facility has tripled since the fall of Roe.

States with exceptions for pregnancies with fatal fetal anomalies
ABC News, Guttmacher Institute

Duke University Hospital has added clinicians, clinic dates and operating room time to be able to care for the influx in patients seeking care, according to Dr. Clayton Alfonso, an OB-GYN at the hospital.

Even women less than 12 weeks along face three mandatory in-person appointments to receive an abortion pill, a mandatory ultrasound and a state-mandated script. This means at least a 72-hour wait before a patient can get the most common form of abortion care in America -- a barrier that could prevent many from being able to access care, Alfonso said.

Still, Alfonso said several patients are unable to get care every week because they do not meet an exception or they are further along than 12 weeks.

States with exceptions for pregnancies resulting from rape
ABC News, Guttmacher Institute

A number of barriers exist for women unable to access care in their home states, including the cost of travel and accommodations, access to child care, work and the cost of out-of-state health care.

Not unlike other states with restrictions, the wording around fetal anomalies has been confusing for abortion providers in North Carolina.

"They listed it as 'life-limiting fetal anomalies,' which in medical literature doesn't really have a definition. What does 'life-limiting' mean? Does that mean quality of life? Does that mean length of life? Does that mean it has to be fatal? And so we have had to utilize a lot of our lawyers and different attorneys to be able to help to discuss that statute itself to try to figure out what does and does not fit the definition," Alfonso said.

States with exceptions for pregnancies resulting from incest
ABC News, Guttmacher Institute

All eyes are on the U.S. Supreme Court once again, awaiting a key decision over Idaho's near-total abortion ban that could potentially effect emergency abortion care around the country.

Idaho's ban prohibits all abortions with exceptions for rape, incest and to save the life of a pregnant woman. The Biden administration sued Idaho over its ban claiming it violates EMTALA -- a federal law mandating facilities that receive Medicare funds provide "stabilizing care" to patients whose health is in jeopardy. The Biden administration argues Idaho's abortion law prevents providers from giving care to preserve women's health.

A decision in the case is expected in the coming weeks.

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