March 10th is the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. David Gunn, the first provider murdered by an anti-abortion extremist. It is a day to remember and honor Dr. Gunn and others who have and continue to put their lives on the line daily to make choice possible.
In honor of this day, I would like to post a few facts many here in Minnesota may not know about abortion:
Where Do Women Obtain Abortions?
In 2000, there were 1,819 abortion providers in the United States. This represents an 11% decrease from 1996, when there were 2,042 abortion providers. 33% of these providers were hospitals, 25% were abortion clinics (clinics where more than half of all patient visits were for abortion), 21% were clinics where fewer than half of all visits were for abortion, and 21% were private physicians' offices. 71% of all abortions were provided at abortion clinics, 22% at other clinics, 5% at hospitals and 2% at private physicians' offices.
In 2000, there were 11 abortion providers in Minnesota. This represents a 15% decrease from 1996, when there were 13 abortion providers.
In 2000, 87% of U.S. counties had no abortion provider. 1/3 of American women lived in these counties, which meant they would have to travel outside their county to obtain an abortion. Of women obtaining abortions in 2000, 25% traveled at least 50 miles, and 8% traveled more than 100 miles.
In 2000, 95% of Minnesota counties had no abortion provider. 58% of Minnesota women lived in these counties. In the Midwest census region, where Minnesota is located, 28% of women having abortions traveled at least 50 miles, and 10% traveled more than 100 miles.
In Minnesota, 2 metropolitan areas lack an abortion provider: Grand Forks, ND-MN; St. Cloud
Also, be sure to read up on TRAP (Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers) laws currently being attempted, including:
A federal appeals court agreed with a lower court and struck down Arizonas TRAP provisions that would have severely threatened the informational privacy rights of women who received abortions (and other patients, if their doctor per forms abortions). The provisions that were struck down include: 1) a requirement that health care providers turn over womens ultrasounds (including patient names and other identifying information) to state contractors, and 2) a law that allows health department officials to search providers offices (including private patient records) without a warrant and without any patient privacy protections in place.