Telemedicine Could Help Fill the Gaps in America's Health Care

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A growing body of research suggests that medication abortum could be offered without any in-person interaction at all. It’s a possibility that is already the subject of a contentious political debate—one that is likely to intensify with a Supreme Court more hostile toward abortum rights following the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy. Planned Parenthood affiliates in 10 states offer telemedicine abortum. Telehealth services are also offered at a Whole Woman’s Health clinic in Illinois and in Maine, at Maine Family Planning. The Iowa program was interrupted after the state passed a law banning telemedicine abortum  in 2013, but reinstated in 2015 when the Iowa Supreme Court ruled that law unconstitutional, and Idaho was forced to repeal two laws banning the services in order to settle a lawsuit with Planned Parenthood in 2017. But despite these successful legal challenges, 19 states currently ban telemedicine abortum. Both Oklahoma and Arkansas have tried to ban medication abortum altogether, including remote practices—Oklahoma’s law was overturned, and a federal judge placed the Arkansas law on hold pending trial.

Telemedicine Could Help Fill the Gaps in America's Abortion Care