Illinois doctors prepare for rush


Women demonstrate in front of the Supreme Court against the tightening of abortion laws
Image: AFP

The Supreme Court’s decision on abortion rights has not yet been made. But gynecologists in Illinois, which has a liberal law, are already preparing for an onslaught from other states.

In Illinois they are proud that they perform abortions. When push comes to shove, Laura Laursen will stop delivering babies or seeing patients in surgery. Then she will have more abortions. Because, says the gynecologist from Chicago, “we know” that abortions save the lives of many women. And the fact that they could be banned in many American states in the future keeps Laursen awake. “Sometimes I wake up and think: It’s 2022, how can something like this happen now?”

Sofia Dreisbach

North American political correspondent based in Washington.

The Supreme Court’s decision on the possible overturning of the landmark decision on the right to abortion has not yet been made. But since the draft was pushed through, Laursen’s phone has been ringing non-stop. They are women from Kentucky, from Texas, from state clinics who fear that they will no longer be able to care for their patients in the future. For the thirty-six-year-old, it feels like she’s been catapulted back decades. Laursen’s mother went to college before 1973, before the landmark “Roe v. Wade”, according to which the right to an abortion can be derived from the 14th amendment and the protection of privacy. At the time, she put friends together so that one of them could travel from Wisconsin to New York for an abortion. It could work like this again.

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