As a window opens for legal abortion in Arizona, providers ride emotional roller coaster
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(CNN) — A year of high-intensity advocacy on the part of abortion providers, a barrage of media attention — and an explosion of support from the public — resulted in major victories for abortion rights in Arizona.
But a year of activism like this one does not come without challenges.
In the past year, we have learned we would not be able to be on time with Medicaid and would face financial penalties if we were not. We have faced death threats and harassment from anti-abortion protesters. We’ve had to fight legal battles to have insurance providers cover us.
We have learned we have to file more paperwork with the state. We have learned we have to disclose all the names of our providers. We have had to be extra careful not to publicize the names of individual clinics. We had to keep records of all abortions done at our facility — a requirement that has become even more challenging for our small- and medium-sized clinics. A requirement for us to have an annual license from the state has made it more difficult to offer abortion. Our clinics are also required to report to the state every case of a patient coming in with a pregnancy that is later determined to be the result of rape, incest, or a genetic abnormality.
For the first time in Arizona history, there are actually two laws on the statute books that directly restrict access to safe, legal abortion in our state. They are the two-drug abortion ban, which will outlaw the procedure for pregnancies with the foetal age limit of greater than 18 weeks and bans the provision of information that would indicate a pregnancy is over 18 weeks’ gestation before it can be used as the legal justification for abortion. They would be the first such bans in