Duluth Health Clinic Reports High Demand for Abortion Procedures

DULUTH, Minn. — A clinic in Duluth says that they expect to see more out-of-state patients coming in for abortions, one month after federal protections for the procedure were overturned by the supreme court.

Just one month ago, Roe v. Wade was overturned.

While some states have been affected by the ruling, Minnesota’s abortion rights have remained in place, allowing facilities like the WE Health Clinic in Duluth to continue with abortion operations.

“It seems like Minnesota’s going to become kind of a beacon of what abortions look like in the nation. It’s also really heartbreaking because we see those patients everyday, we hear their stories, and we know that people need this care,” said WE Health Patient Educator and Laboratory Supervisor, Paulina Briggs.

Briggs went on to explain that Minnesota has become an island for legal abortion in the Midwest– “We’ve been getting calls from patients from out of state, even like non-neighboring states asking like where am I supposed to go? What am I supposed to do now?”

The Supreme Court ruling has highly restricted abortion or outlawed it as a criminal act in 13 states.

Briggs says that the clinic has since seen a heightened demand for abortions and they have increased their amount of abortion procedures offered on a day-to-day basis.

“One thing we’re considering when we do see patients that come from states where abortion is now illegal, is that we have to kind of coach them on the risks that they face when they return home. Even though abortion is very safe and complication rates are very low. That is something that we have to keep in mind because there is some legal risk there for them and it’s not very clear now what that is so we just want them to be aware of that.”

The WE Health Clinic has a team of 5 nurses, and they offer abortion services on one day each week for up to 20 patients. The clinic also has one doctor who provides non-surgical operations Monday through Friday.

Briggs says WE Health might need more help in the future.

“We’re able to meet the capacity that we’re at right now, but it’s just really hard to predict right now what things are gonna look like.”

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