Texas abortion bans challenged in extraordinary court docket testimony from 3 ladies : Photographs

Samantha Casiano told a Texas courtroom that she should really have been able to let her daughter, who experienced anencephaly, “go to rest faster.”

Danielle Villasana for NPR


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Danielle Villasana for NPR


Samantha Casiano told a Texas courtroom that she must have been capable to enable her daughter, who had anencephaly, “go to relaxation faster.”

Danielle Villasana for NPR

AUSTIN, Texas – Samantha Casiano, who gave birth to a baby who lived just 4 hours, broke down and became bodily sick on the witness stand as she advised the tale of her doomed pregnancy in an Austin, Texas, courtroom on Wednesday. Her partner, Luis Villasana, rushed to the entrance of the courtroom to support her, during a hearing in a case challenging the abortion bans in Texas.

Casiano was a person of three females who gave dramatic testimony about their pregnancies in a hushed and spellbound courtroom in the case brought by the Heart for Reproductive Rights. The circumstance, on behalf of 13 people and two doctors, argues that the clinical exceptions to Texas’ legal guidelines are unclear and unworkable for medical professionals in means that hurt sufferers. They also say that the condition has carried out very little to clarify its legislation.

The case is thought to be the initially time the activities of girls have been heard in open court since the Supreme Court ended the constitutional suitable to abortion very last June.

In Wednesday’s proceeding, which will go on on Thursday, lawyers for Casiano and the other plaintiffs asked the choose to briefly suspend the bans for folks who have health care complications in their pregnancies as the circumstance proceeds. Point out Lawyer Basic Ken Paxton’s business is inquiring for the circumstance to be dismissed.

The benches in the roomy, brand name new courtroom at the Travis County Civil District Court were filled with reporters, plaintiffs, and their supporters, such as quite a few husbands. Users of the anti-abortion legal rights group Texas Alliance for Lifestyle ended up also in attendance.

Eight lawyers represented the clients and medical professionals hard the regulation. On the other aspect of the room, two lawyers represented defendant Texas Attorney Normal Ken Paxton. Judge Jessica Mangrum, elected as a Democratic judicial applicant in 2020, presided.

Paxton, presently suspended, faces an impeachment demo in September above allegations of bribery and abuse of ability.

For the duration of several hours of psychological testimony, the courtroom felt tense and tranquil. Casiano, who first explained to her story to NPR in April, was so defeat as she described her activities she cried, coughed, and gagged in the witness box. The courtroom was adjourned for a recess at that point.

When it was again in session, Casiano explained what it was like to give beginning to the daughter they named Halo. “She was gasping for air,” Casiano claimed. “I just retained telling myself and my toddler that I am so sorry that this has took place to you. I felt so

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The fight over ‘heartbeat’ further inflames tensions in abortion battle

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Good Monday morning, readers! Today’s edition is coming to you from the Cunningham household, where I’m pleased to report an 18 percent reduction since school started again in the time needed to get three kids out the door. Rachel Roubein will be back in your inbox tomorrow.

Below: Abortion ranks second among issues more important to voters in a new Washington Post-ABC News poll and Moderna has asked federal regulators for emergency use authorization of its omicron-targeting coronavirus booster shot for kids and teens. But first:

Newly-pregnant women hear the word “heartbeat” all the time

A “heartbeat” doesn’t exist early in pregnancy, abortion rights advocates and some Democrats argue as they combat a spate of abortion bans pegged to embryonic cardiac activity.

The heated debate was reignited last week, when Stacey Abrams told an audience “there is no such thing as a heartbeat at six weeks.”

“It is a manufactured sound designed to convince people that men have the right to take control of a woman’s body,” said Abrams, a Democrat who is running for governor of Georgia.

Antiabortion lawmakers and groups quickly denounced Abrams and the furious back and forth highlighted how in the aftermath of the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, the battle over abortion will be fought word for word with precise definitions squaring off against popular understanding. Doctors say the sound heard during an early pregnancy ultrasound is a precursor to a heartbeat, not a heartbeat itself, whose sound is created by the cardiac valves opening and closing — something that can’t be heard until closer to 10 weeks.

But for women going through pregnancy, that’s not the message they get on popular pregnancy websites or even in their own doctor’s office. It’s common for OB/GYNs to check for a “heartbeat” on the first prenatal visit — and for women to experience an immense feeling of relief when a fluttering sound is heard. Consider this language from leading pregnancy websites describing embryonic development at six weeks:

  • TheBump.com: “Baby’s heart is typically beating away by six weeks.”
  • Whattoexpect.com: “Your baby’s heart has started to beat sometime between week 5 and now.”
  • BabyCenter.com: “Your baby’s heart isn’t fully developed, but cells in the heart tube have started beating fast, around 160 times a minute. You may hear the sound this week if you have an early ultrasound.”
  • Johns Hopkins places it even earlier, saying on its website that “the heart is beating” by the end of four weeks.

Government-backed websites in other countries also refer to a heartbeat by six weeks:

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How state abortion bans complicate telehealth abortions : Shots

Allison Case is a family medicine physician who is licensed to practice in both Indiana and New Mexico. Via telehealth appointments, she’s used her dual license in the past to help some women who have driven from Texas to New Mexico, where abortion is legal, to get their prescription for abortion medication. Then came Indiana’s abortion ban.

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Allison Case, a family medicine physician, spends much of her time working in a hospital where she delivers babies and provides reproductive health care services, including abortions.

Case lives and works in Indiana, where a ban on most abortions took effect for a week in late September until a judge temporarily halted the ban. The state has since appealed the judge’s order and asked the Indiana’s high court to take up the case. Meanwhile, Case is also licensed to practice in New Mexico, a state where abortion remains legal.

Before Indiana’s abortion ban took effect, Case would use her days off to provide reproductive health services, including abortion care, via telemedicine through a clinic that serves patients in New Mexico. Many of them travel from neighboring Texas, where abortion is banned.

Some travel solo, she says, and others have their children with them.

“Some people are [staying in] hotels, others might have family or friends they can stay with, some are just sleeping in their cars,” Case says. “It’s really awful.”

During a telemedicine appointment, doctors, nurses or other qualified health professionals review the medical history of the patient and ensure eligibility for a medication abortion. They give the patient information about how the two pills work, how to take them, what to look out for as the body expels the pregnancy, and when to seek medical attention in the rare instance of complications. The medications are then mailed to the patient, who must provide a mailing address in a state where abortion is legal.

In the U.S., more than a dozen states severely restrict access to abortion, and almost as many have such laws in the works. Across the country, since Roe v. Wade was overturned, clinics that do provide abortions have seen an increase in demand. Many clinics rely on help from physicians out of state, like Case, who are able to alleviate some of the pressure and keep wait times down by providing services via telemedicine.

But as more states move to restrict abortion, these providers are finding themselves navigating an increasingly complicated legal landscape.

Is abortion by telemedicine legal? Experts differ

Medication abortions work for most people who are under 11 weeks pregnant, and research suggests medication abortion via telemedicine is safe and effective. Yet many states have enacted legislation to ban or limit access to telehealth abortions.

But it’s not always clear what that means for doctors like Case who are physically located in a state with abortion restrictions but have a license that enables them to provide care via telehealth

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How Texas abortion law turned a pregnancy loss into a medical trauma : Shots

Elizabeth and James Weller at their home in Houston two months after losing their baby girl due to a premature rupture of membranes. Elizabeth could not receive the medical care she needed until several days later because of a Texas law that banned abortion after six weeks.

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Elizabeth and James Weller at their home in Houston two months after losing their baby girl due to a premature rupture of membranes. Elizabeth could not receive the medical care she needed until several days later because of a Texas law that banned abortion after six weeks.

Julia Robinson for NPR

New, untested abortion bans have made doctors unsure about treating some pregnancy complications, which has led to life-threatening delays and trapped families in a limbo of grief and helplessness.

Elizabeth Weller never dreamed that her own hopes for a child would become ensnared in the web of Texas abortion law.

She and her husband began trying in late 2021. They had bought a house in Kingwood, a lakeside development in Houston. Elizabeth was in graduate school for political science, and James taught middle-school math.

The Wellers were pleasantly surprised when they got pregnant early in 2022.

In retrospect, Elizabeth says their initial joy felt a little naive: “If it was so easy for us to get pregnant, then to us it was almost like a sign that this pregnancy was going to be easy for us.”

Things did go fairly smooth at first. Seventeen weeks into the pregnancy, they learned they were expecting a girl. They also had an anatomy scan, which revealed no problems. Even if it had, the Wellers were determined to proceed.

“We skipped over the genetic testing offered in the first trimester,” Elizabeth says. “I was born with a physical disability. If she had any physical ailments, I would never abort her for that issue.”

Elizabeth thought of abortion rights in broad terms: “I have said throughout my life I believe that women should have the access to the right to an abortion. I personally would never get one.”

And at this particular point in her life, pregnant for the first time at age 26, it was still somewhat abstract: “I had not been put in a position to where I had to weigh the real nuances that went into this situation. I had not been put in the crossroads of this issue.”

But in early May, not long after the uneventful anatomy scan, the Wellers suddenly arrived at that crossroads. There they found themselves pinned down, clinically and emotionally, victims of a collision between standard obstetrical practice and the rigid new demands of Texas law.

It was May 10, 2022. Elizabeth was 18 weeks pregnant. She ate a healthy breakfast, went for a walk outside and came back home.

In the nursery upstairs, they had already stashed some baby clothes and new cans of paint. Down in the kitchen, images from recent scans and ultrasounds

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Myths about abortion and women’s mental wellbeing are widespread, gurus say



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It’s an unfounded message industry experts say is recurring all over again and all over again: Getting an abortion may perhaps problems a woman’s psychological wellbeing, probably for many years.

“There’s so much misinformation, so a lot of myths about abortion. Abortion will direct to material abuse, despair, suicidal thoughts abortion is negative for your wellbeing each individual woman is heading to regret it,” reported social psychologist Brenda Main, a distinguished professor emeritus in the division of psychological and brain sciences at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

In reality, many years of exploration has revealed “the extensive greater part of girls come to feel they built the right selection, and they really don’t encounter regret,” claimed Significant, who led a 2008 American Psychological Affiliation endeavor drive checking out the science on abortion and mental wellbeing.

Women of all ages who had an abortion in the first trimester ended up no more very likely to have mental well being issues than females who continued with an unplanned pregnancy, the APA evaluate concluded.

A huge, extensive-phrase analyze, named The Turnaway Review, followed the mental health and fitness of practically 1,000 ladies in 21 states who required and received an abortion and ladies who wished but were denied an abortion in between 2008 and 2010.

The women had been interviewed just about every six months above the following five several years. At the stop of that time, 99% of the females who experienced an abortion believed they experienced designed the suitable choice – in truth reduction was the distinguished emotion, one particular investigation famous.

Women of all ages who acquired an abortion experienced identical or reduced levels of melancholy and anxiety than gals denied an abortion and have been no far more most likely to encounter write-up-traumatic strain than girls who carried their child to phrase, according to examine effects.

The investigation also identified no variance in mental health and fitness results involving a first trimester abortion and getting an abortion later in the being pregnant.

Abortion misinformation may well come from pals or relatives, an write-up or study browse on the net, or all through a mandated pre-abortion counseling session some states put into position during the Roe v. Wade era, professionals informed CNN.

Of the 33 states that have expected sufferers obtain counseling before an abortion, 8 routinely included the prospective for detrimental psychological responses as portion of the conversation, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a nonprofit exploration and policy organization that focuses on sexual and reproductive rights worldwide.

“There are states in which ladies are advised that simply because they’re getting an abortion, they are at greater hazard for despair, suicidal ideation, submit traumatic anxiety ailment and extra,” explained Julia Steinberg, an affiliate professor of family science at the University of Maryland’s College of Public Overall health.

“Abortion does not bring about despair, it does not cause suicide (or) suicidal ideation. It does not induce compound use. It does not result in panic

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Superior courtroom: Arizona can implement genetic difficulty abortion ban | Wellbeing and Conditioning

PHOENIX (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday permitted enforcement of a 2021 Arizona legislation that lets prosecutors convey felony charges in opposition to medical practitioners who knowingly terminate pregnancies entirely for the reason that the fetuses have a genetic abnormality these kinds of as Down syndrome.

The decision arrives in the wake of the high court’s June 24 conclusion that reported females have no constitutional appropriate to acquire an abortion. It has no fast influence for the reason that Arizona providers stopped all abortions following very last Friday’s Supreme Court ruling.

Vendors, together with Planned Parenthood Arizona, stopped performing abortions instantly since they were being apprehensive about a pre-statehood regulation building it a crime to accomplish an abortion or help in any way, unless the lifetime of the mother is threatened. It was unclear if that law could be enforced, but Republican Legal professional Normal Mark Brnovich said Wednesday that it can be.

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That determination puts him at odds with GOP Gov. Doug Ducey, who has continuously stated that a ban on abortions after 15 weeks’ pregnancy that he signed in March usually takes priority. His spokesman, C.J. Karamargin, said Wednesday evening that the governor’s business office is reviewing that decision and experienced no rapid comment.

The 2021 regulation particularly stated it did not overturn the complete abortion ban in place since at minimum 11 many years in advance of Arizona became a state in 1912. The Republican-managed Legislature did take out an additional part of that regulation allowing females to be sentenced to one to five many years in prison if convicted of possessing an abortion.

Democrats and abortion legal rights advocates slammed Brnovich’s decision.

“Mark Brnovich just took us back again to 1901,” Democratic attorney typical candidate Kris Mayes said Thursday. “And I consider it really should outrage everybody. It truly is way outdoors of in which most Arizonans stand on this situation.

“And it can be also unconstitutional,” she additional. “I feel all of these guidelines violate Arizona’s privateness clause.”

Mayes explained she’s unaware of anybody hard abortion restrictions below that element of the point out constitution. But she vowed by no means to prosecute females in Arizona for violating legislation proscribing abortion if she is elected in November.

In Thursday’s genetic abnormality ruling, the Supreme Courtroom despatched the case back again to the federal choose in Phoenix who had blocked it last September. U.S. District Choose Douglas Rayes reported in his ruling that the law’s criminal provisions ended up most likely unconstitutionally vague, describing it’s unclear at what point in the procedure medical practitioners can be considered to be aware that fetal genetic abnormality exists.

When the legislation was getting debated past yr, Republican point out Sen. Nancy Barto stated children with Down syndrome and other genetic abnormalities ought to have to be secured and can are living “productive, great lives.”

“There are amazing numbers of folks that recognize those small children that have

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