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Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade – these maps show how access to abortion will change

22 states can quickly ban abortions with Roe v. Wade overturned; 13 states have 'trigger' laws that will ban abortion immediately

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The Supreme Court has overruled Roe v. Wade, a monumental and controversial decision that held Americans do not have a constitutional right to abortion.

The court voted 6-3 to uphold a Mississippi law that bans abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. Chief Justice John Roberts joined that part of the decision but wrote separately to say he did not support directly overruling Roe.

On May 2, a leaked Supreme Court draft opinion that suggested Roe could be overturned left abortion rights supporters apprehensive and anti-abortion groups hopeful about the coming ruling.

In the 1973 Roe v. Wade case, the Supreme Court ruled that the constitutional right to privacy included the right to terminate a pregnancy; however, it did not grant an absolute right to an abortion.

The court's decision means states can individually decide how to regulate abortion.

States can further restrict abortion with Roe overturned

Twenty-two states have laws that could be used to restrict the legal status of abortion, according to The Guttmacher Institute, an organization that works to study, educate, and advance sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Of these 22 states, 13 have laws designed to be “triggered,” taking effect automatically or by quick state action, since Roe no longer applies. Nine states have an abortion ban on the books from before Roe v. Wade.

Before the recent decision, some states had bans on abortions six weeks after conception that were not yet in effect, and one state, Texas, had a six-week ban already in effect. Some states had multiple types of bans in place.

Where is abortion restricted? 

Abortion laws across the states

Since the Supreme Court ruled on Roe v. Wade in 1973, states have constructed a web of abortion law, limiting whether, when, and under what circumstances a person may obtain an abortion.

Forty-three states prohibit abortions after a specified point in pregnancy, with some exceptions. The limits of each state range from conception, passed in May in Oklahoma, to the third trimester in Virginia.

What state policies affect use of telehealth for medical abortions?

Before 2020, all medication abortions required an in-person appointment. The Food and Drug Administration suspended that requirement during the pandemic, deciding that an in-person visit was an unreasonable barrier. The FDA permanently removed the in-person requirement in December 2021, allowing telemedicine visits and mailed pills. 

Access to medication abortion hinges not only on the FDA’s decision but also on the abortion-specific regulations on the books in many states.

Abortion by pill is used in at least 54% of terminated pregnancies in the USA. The number has grown rapidly since the process became easier to access in 2016 and during the coronavirus pandemic and could rise even higher now that Roe is overturned.

Learn more about the ruling: Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, eliminating constitutional right to abortion

Explore abortion laws across the U.S.Searchable database of state-by-state limits and protections

Contributing: Donovan Slack and Shawn Sullivan. 

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