A number of Democrat-led states are preparing to drastically expand the type of healthcare professionals who can provide abortions in response to the potential overturning of Roe v. Wade, according to Politico.
Newly proposed laws in multiple states would allow individuals like nurses, midwives other non-doctors to perform abortions, Politico reports. There has been pushback from some who say the expansion will increase risk for pregnant women, but pro-abortion advocates fear clinics will otherwise become overwhelmed if red states begin outlawing abortion after the fall of Roe.
“We saw what was happening in states adjacent to Texas, the increased wait times for appointments, and we didn’t want that to be what happens in Maryland, both for the sake of patients in Maryland and for the sake of out-of-state patients,” State Delegate Ariana Kelly of Maryland told Politico. Kelly introduced a bill which removed Maryland’s longstanding ban on anyone except a doctor providing abortions, which passed after Democrats overrode a veto from Republican Gov. Larry Hogan.
Democratic Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont signed a bill earlier this month allowing nurses, midwives and physician’s assistants to perform abortions. Washington also recently modified its abortion laws to clarify that non-physicians can perform abortions, and altered language in state law to refer to “pregnant individuals” instead of “women.” (RELATED: Dem Witness Says Men Can Get Pregnant And Have Abortions)
Beyond just expanding the groups of people who can perform abortions, some states are dumping millions of dollars into training new providers, according to Politico.
We’re proposing legislation to bolster access to reproductive care by:
✅Codifying the expansion of potential abortion providers to include advanced practice nurses, midwives, & physician assistants
✅Mandating that insurance plans in NJ cover abortion with no out-of-pocket costs
— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) May 11, 2022
In Maryland, Democratic lawmakers have clashed with Hogan to try and funnel money toward training new abortion providers as soon as this summer. Democratic New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy has proposed proving training grants to bolster the state’s supply of abortion providers. In New York, Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul set aside $35 million to increase abortion access, some of which will go toward training more abortion providers.
The proposals signify an even more drastic divide than already exists may be coming in the post-Roe landscape between blue states that continue to push the boundaries of pro-choice policy and red states that are primed to ban the practice outright.