Planned Parenthood is rushing to perform abortions before Florida’s 15-week ban

Posted 41 days ago


With less than a week until Florida’s 15-week abortion cutoff is set to take effect, Planned Parenthood clinics are scrambling to provide abortions to desperate women at or past 15 weeks of pregnancy while also fielding calls from patients who are concerned about what the fall of Roe v. Wade means for their future.

“The sound of panic in a patient’s voice on the phone right now, it’s just, it’s heartbreaking. And then they ask us why, and I’m like, ‘I don’t know why they’re doing this,’” said Stephanie Fraim, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida.

So far, Fraim believes Planned Parenthood will accommodate everyone who needs an abortion before Friday, when Florida’s 15-week ban is set to take effect.

“We’ve done all kinds of expanding of schedules, working extra hours,” Fraim said on Tuesday. “But it’s a hard stop on Friday, right? So, we only have three more days.”

A judge will decide Thursday whether to delay its start date amid an ongoing lawsuit filed by the ACLU and Planned Parenthood. The suit argues a law passed by the Florida Legislature this spring, HB 5, violates a right to privacy, which is protected in the state’s constitution.

The law offers few exceptions, allowing abortions after 15 weeks only if two doctors attest the termination of a pregnancy is necessary to save the mother from death or serious injury, or if the fetus has a “fatal fetal abnormality,” defined as a condition that will result in death at birth or immediately after regardless of attempts to save the newborn’s life.

About 96-98% of abortions in Florida happen before the 15-week cutoff, according to 2019 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Data from Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration suggests the thousands of women getting abortions in their second trimester are more likely to do so because they discovered a serious genetic anomaly in their fetuses.

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