Op Ed

Future docs learn abortion procedures in New York

Already, New Yorkers have taken measures to ensure access to out-of-staters. A group of locals called the Haven Coalition puts up women who trek here for late-term abortions, illegal or inaccessible in many states. In a hypothetical post- Roe America, are today's dedicated pro-choice med students prepared to copy the underground provider networks of the pre- Roe era? Some acknowledge that civil disobedience is a real possibility, noting that the abortion pill would be a popular method in such circumstances.

Miriam Sheinbein, of Medical Students for Choice's Albert Einstein chapter
Miriam Sheinbein, of Medical Students for Choice's Albert Einstein chapter

But no one wants to have to break the law. Providers would prefer, as Estes says, "to work ourselves out of a job. Contraception is our first and most important mission. . . . If I never had to do another abortion in my life, I'd be happy." Of course, the demand is unlikely to disappear soon. From her time at Planned Parenthood, Sheinbein recalls a 14-year-old who'd been sexually active for two years, but "didn't know what sex was"—she had no concept of its relationship to reproduction. Another patient got migraines from hormonal birth control and was allergic to latex. She used a non-latex condom and got pregnant. As long as heterosexual couples have sex, and education and contraception are imperfect, there will be jobs for abortion providers—and if MSFC and its allies succeed, there will be enough abortion providers to fill them.

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