Giving Compass' Take:
- Experts from the National Rural Health Association are worried about the consequences for rural women and rural hospitals if the supreme court overturns Roe v. Wade.
- Rural hospitals are already understaffed and under-resourced and rural areas are already considered "maternity deserts." Experts think that increasing live births will be detrimental for women and hospitals, especially regarding access.
- Read more on why overturning Roe v Wade would increase economic injustice.
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If the U.S. Supreme Court decides this month that there is no constitutional right to abortion, overturning almost 50 years of case law, health officials expect more births that will put more pressure on "already strained rural obstetrics units," Liz Carey reports for The Daily Yonder.
Citing a report from The Commonwealth Fund, Carey says fewer than half of the nation's rural counties have obstetric services: "With fewer OB units, rural women are facing longer travel times to get to a hospital that can deliver their babies. The OB unit closures also mean increases in births outside hospitals, births in hospitals without obstetrics care, and preterm births — all of which put both mother and child at risk."
Maternal sickness and mortality is already higher for rural residents, and would likely get worse if abortions are greatly limited, Katy Backes Kozhimannil, professor at the University of Minnesota and director of the its Rural Health Research Center, told Carey. "The impact would most be felt by marginalized communities within rural areas, she said."
Read the full article about abortion access in rural areas by Al Cross at The Rural Blog.