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ANSIRH News

The Turnaway Study finds that abortion does not increase women’s risk of experiencing suicidal thoughts

New research from ANSIRH’s Turnaway Study found no evidence that women who have abortions are at higher risk of developing symptoms of suicidal ideation than women denied abortions. Women who sought abortion at later gestational ages were at no higher risk of having suicidal thoughts post-abortion seeking than those who sought abortion earlier in pregnancy. 

We found that having a history of mental health conditions, and intimate partner violence increased women’s risk of experiencing symptoms of suicidal ideation, not having an abortion.

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Novel study identifies 27 large U.S. cities as “abortion deserts”

We conducted a first-of-its-kind systematic online search for abortion facilities in U.S. cities with a population of 100,000 or greater and found that access to abortion facilities and certain types of services greatly vary throughout the United States.

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Allowing pharmacists to dispense medication abortion on prescription could improve access to early abortion care

Despite the growing use of medications to induce termination of early pregnancy, pharmacist involvement in abortion care is currently limited in the U.S. The Food and Drug Administration’s Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) for Mifeprex® (mifepristone 200 mg) prohibits the dispensing of the drug on prescription at pharmacies. But, given its safety record, this dispensing restriction is not evidence-based and constrains access to medication abortion.

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Discrimination, lack of LGBTQ competency by providers impedes reproductive healthcare for LGBTQ individuals

LGBTQ people seek reproductive healthcare services for diverse needs and face unique challenges in accessing care. In this study, we conducted in-depth interviews of 39 female-assigned-at-birth people who also identified as lesbian, bisexual, queer and/or genderqueer or transmasculine. We asked about both their current reproductive health needs and their past reproductive healthcare experiences.

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ANSIRH Update: April 2018

The latest ANSIRH Update, from April 2018. We are off to a very productive start to the year, with 14 peer-reviewed articles—four from the Turnaway Study alone. Our research was featured in 111 media articles from 67 media outlets, and we also published 5 op-eds and one New York Times letter to the editor. And Monica McLemore was not only named the Abortion Care Network (ACN) Person of the Year, but was also the star of billboards around the Bay Area for an ACN campaign that is challenging deceptive crisis pregnancy centers and so-called “abortion reversal” of medication abortion.

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Few women go to crisis pregnancy centers for pregnancy counseling

Research has documented that antiabortion, evangelical Christian-run crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) present inaccurate information about abortion to pregnant women, and abortion rights advocates have reported anecdotal accounts of CPCs deceiving women. A new ANSIRH study set out to empirically measure the frequency with which pregnant women seek CPC services and, when they do go to a CPC, the impacts of those visits on their pregnancy decision-making.

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The expertise of clinicians, guidelines of professional organizations, and scientific evidence should guide the development of facility standards

We conducted key informant interviews with 20 expert clinicians and accreditation professionals involved in facility standards development for common outpatient procedures, such as endoscopy, gynecology, oral surgery, and plastic surgery. We sought to understand how facility standards are developed in these areas of health care and to identify lessons learned that may be applicable to abortion.

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Women denied abortion are significantly less likely to support the legal right to abortion

“Attitudes Toward Abortion After Receiving vs. Being Denied an Abortion in the USA,” a study published in Sexuality Research and Social Policy, examined attitudes toward abortion legality and morality among women who received an abortion vs. those who were denied the abortion they sought.

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Having an abortion does not lead to increased alcohol, tobacco or drug use

A new publication from the Turnaway Study, “Changes in alcohol, tobacco, and drug use over five years after receiving versus being denied a pregnancy termination,” [link] available from the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, found no evidence that having an abortion leads to women to increase use of alcohol, tobacco, or drugs.

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State law approaches to facility regulation of abortion and other office interventions

We studied state facility laws across all fifty states and the District of Columbia, comparing laws that targeted abortion provision (Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers—TRAP laws); laws that governed office-based surgeries, procedures, sedation or anesthesia use generally (OBS laws); and laws that targeted the provision of specific procedures other than abortion. We found that regulations placed on abortion facilities are more numerous, expansive, and burdensome than laws regulating facilities providing other medical procedures.

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ANSIRH is a program within the UCSF Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health and is a part of UCSF's Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences.

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