Need an abortion? You might have to take a road trip.
Abortion accessibility continues to be a major reproductive rights issue, and a lot of the problem may depend on where you live.
Abortion accessibility continues to be a major reproductive rights issue, and a lot of the problem may depend on where you live. According to Rebecca Wind from the Guttmacher Institute, “In 25 states, more than half of the women live in a county without an abortion provider.” At minimum, many people have to leave the county they live in to access abortion. The same Guttmacher report covered by TIME noted that people living in rural Kansas, Nebraska, Montana, Texas, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota had to travel over 180 miles to get to the nearest abortion clinic. Since costs are not controlled across practices for things like anesthetics, medications, IUDs or birth control following the procedure, it can be hard to know exactly how much an abortion might end up costing. It’s very possible that the closest abortion provider to you might not be the most affordable one.
So what happens as a result of all of this? It turns out that many people have turned to traveling out of state to get abortions in more accessible places. The Illinois Department of Public Health has reported that over 5,500 women traveled to Illinois from other states in 2017, which is up from previous years.
While it is always good news to hear about more people being able to access the care they need, it brings up serious concerns: 1) the massive additional cost of travel, hotel stay, and taking time off work, and 2) what happens to the people who are unable to travel to Illinois (or anywhere else)?
With all of these factors presenting serious barriers to accessing abortion, traveling out of state might not be an option. SASS knows and is here to help. Learn more about self-managed abortion at www.abortionpillinfo.org. Self-managed abortion uses medications to end a pregnancy, but it is important to know the facts and be sure that it is the right option for you. Head to our website to talk to one of our trusted team members about your situation and your options. They can get you the information you need to make a safe and informed decision!