Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The turnaways . . .

WOMEN AS SLAVES: a woman who is denied freedom of choice is as much a slave as those unfortunates in the slaver holding pens of 200 years ago, who were bred at the whims of their owners. And as we have seen, the GOP likes it that way, and American conservatives have made every effort to make abortion illegal.

Their efforts mean that, in the US, way too many women are denied access to abortion. These unfortunates, known as "Turnaways" have been the subject of a medical study, according to Annalee Newitz' article in io9, "What happens to women denied abortions? This is the first scientific study to find out."

Public health researchers with the UC San Francisco group Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health (ANSIRH) used data from 956 women who sought abortions at 30 different abortion clinics around the U.S. 182 of them were turned away. The researchers, led by Diana Greene Foster, followed and did intensive interviews with these women, who ran the gamut of abortion experiences. Some obtained abortions easily, for some it was a struggle to get them, and some were denied abortions because their pregnancies had lasted a few days beyond the gestational limits of their local clinics. Two weeks ago, the research group presented what they'd learned after two years of the planned five-year, longitudinal "Turnaway Study" at the recent American Public Health Association conference in San Francisco.

We have found that there are no mental health consequences of abortion compared to carrying an unwanted pregnancy to term. There are other interesting findings: even later abortion is safer than childbirth and women who carried an unwanted pregnancy to term are three times more likely than women who receive an abortion to be below the poverty level two years later.

There are many other consequences of denial of access; click on the link to find out more.

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