How to Choose a Safe Abortion Clinic
Some helpful tips on how to choose a safe abortion clinic
Abortion clinics are in the business of saving and improving lives. Abortion is exponentially safer than giving birth. Your odds of dying or suffering a serious complication during an abortion are lower than those of a serious complication during dental work. So while it’s natural to worry about safety at an abortion clinic, it’s important also to know that you’ll always be in good hands at a clinic staffed with licensed medical providers. If you’re in the market for a safe abortion clinic, here’s how to find the right abortion provider for your needs.
Ensure it’s a Real Abortion Clinic
Ads for fake abortion clinics dominate the Internet. In Texas, fake providers outnumber real providers 10 to 1, and they rake in millions in government funds. These clinics use abortion-related keywords to lure in scared pregnant people and then try to talk them out of abortion. In some cases, they even try to get access to private medical information and then use that information to shame or publicly humiliate visitors. They may also tell you you have signed up for an abortion they don’t actually offer, then delay and distract you until you’re past the legal limit.
Make sure the clinic you choose is a real abortion clinic. Begin your abortion clinic search here.
Check Online Reviews and Reputation
To get a deeper glimpse into what you can expect from a clinic, check its online reputation. Google reviews, yelp, and patient review sites are excellent sources of information. Be mindful that sometimes anti-choicers leave fake negative reviews, and some doctors even ask friends and family to leave fake positive ones. So rather than focusing on a clinic’s star rating, read the actual content of each comment to determine what you can expect.
Learn About the Doctors Who Work at the Clinic
Some, but not all, clinics share the names of medical providers who work there. You can check these providers out by looking them up on your state’s medical board page. In most cases, you’ll be able to review recent complaints and ensure the doctor is licensed. Googling the doctor may also yield helpful information, though it’s important to note that anti-choicers often target abortion doctors. So before you take a scandalous-sounding headline at face value, be sure you check the source.
Call and Ask Questions
After you’ve narrowed down your list, make a list of questions to ask the clinic. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you call, so have these questions written and ready to go. The best clinics are eager to answer all of your questions, so that you feel safe and supported.
Be sure to ask whether the abortion pill is an option. With a medical abortion, you don’t have to spend much time at the clinic–and sometimes you can take the pill at home.
Ask About Payment
There’s significant variability between abortion clinics in terms of cost. You might save a few hundred dollars by calling around. So ask about the price of the procedure, as well as any anesthesia you choose. Learn more about paying for an abortion on our blog.
Be Prepared to Advocate for Yourself
The abortion clinic’s job is to protect your medical needs. But you should still be prepared to advocate for those needs by:
- Telling the clinic about your medical history.
- Asking for any specific accommodations you need.
- Being assertive when you ask questions. If you don’t get an answer, ask someone else.
- Following up with the clinic if there’s a problem.
Know Your Needs and Trust Your Gut
Every abortion patient is different. Some need lots of compassionate support. Others want to just get it over with. Some have complex medical needs. It’s important to choose a clinic whose philosophy and experience are aligned to your needs. So articulate these needs early, and be upfront. If you’re having a termination for a wanted baby with severe birth defects, for example, ask what the clinic does to support you and how many such terminations they do each year. If you’re a rape survivor, inquire as to whether the clinic has trauma-informed providers.
Ultimately, you must do your research and then trust your gut. Choose a clinic where you feel safe and supported. If you need help, we’re here to help you decide. Call us at 800-455-8130.