Abortion access in the United States is limited for people who live in states with hostile abortion restrictions, pushing some to travel out of state to receive care. Our experts commented on a study by Mikaela H. Smith and colleagues that used data from Guttmacher and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to examine the frequency with which people cross state lines for abortion care.
Building on Smith and colleagues' findings, Guttmacher experts used data from our previously published analysis of travel distance to the nearest abortion clinic to examine the proportion of women whose nearest provider was in another state and the proportion of patients who received care out of state. In states with hostile abortion legislation, there is a high correlation between the proportion of women whose nearest provider was in another state and the proportion who obtained out-of-state care not found in a state with supportive abortion policies.
As state restrictions on abortion intensify and Roe v. Wade is threatened by the upcoming US Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, more patients may be forced to travel out of state and even beyond bordering states to access abortion care.
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