For @thenation, I spoke with patients, abortion funds, and clinics nationwide about how abortion access during COVID almost flickered out. 🧵💕…
Patients encountered locked doors, limited services, and state attempts to ban abortion under the guise of preserving PPE.

Abortion funds like @IWRising @WHOohio @lilithfund @JENSouthDakota @TBAF7 @FundTexasChoice @nmrcrc engaged in quiet acts of heroism to get people care.
Still, many people could not get the care they needed.

“If I’m being honest, some teens during the abortion ban did end up continuing pregnancies that they didn’t want to continue, because it was just impossible for them to get care,” @reprorose of @janesdueprocess told me.
The pandemic also shifted how people get abortions.

Many bought pills overseas or from a new slate of digital abortion clinics.

In online forums, @Abortion_Squad and @aBigMess were there to help them navigate this new landscape.
But with more states moving to ban telemedicine abortion, @robinmarty told me she worries that options will grow in some states and shrink in others.

“We are truly going to have the most inequitable system, even more so than we do now," she said.
My main takeaway is this: Abortion funds move mountains.

I spoke with folks who drove strangers for hours through the South Dakota cornfields and the Florida Everglades, who coordinated private AIRPLANE trips to pick people up and fly them to clinics. (I'm looking at @rlorenxo)
As Yamani Hernandez of @AbortionFunds told me, however, abortion funds are also "a very precarious network.” And they don't have nearly enough funding to get everyone the care they need.

Support your fund here:
Also: A MASSIVE shoutout to @AbortionStories for connecting me with Larada Lee.

“Being Black in the middle of trying to seek an abortion in the middle of a pandemic—it was really difficult to navigate all of those feelings," she told me.

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More from @amylittlefield

22 May 19
This by @DrJenGunter shows how "life endangerment" exceptions to abortion bans are a false promise (thread):…
Kansas, which @DrJenGunter cites in her chilling example, is just one state that bans abortion in public facilities unless a patient's life is in danger.

@ElizNash and I found 10 others:…
So how "in danger" does a patient's life have to be?

Patients too sick to walk and at risk of cardiac arrest, patients with terminal cancer, and at risk of major hemorrhage, were all denied abortions.

As one doctor put it, they weren't "dead enough."…
Read 5 tweets
14 Nov 18
This is an important piece about how hospital consolidation drives up patient costs. But @nytimes has again failed to mention how the Catholic hospitals at the center of this trend restrict reproductive health care:…
I wrote in July about how any mention of Catholic hospitals in a story like this - particularly when it's about how they are increasingly becoming the only accessible option - should mention these potentially life-threatening restrictions on care:…
.@ReedAbelson aptly writes: "The emergence of a one-hospital town is inevitable in many places." When your town's one hospital is Catholic, it could mean you are out of luck if you want a tubal ligation, birth control, or abortion, even if the pregnancy threatens your life.
Read 5 tweets
20 Jul 18
When I read the chilling @jackhealyNYT article on rural hospital closures, a detail stood out to me that @nytimes omitted: The hospital a woman traveled 100 miles while in labor to reach is Catholic (thread)…
I've reported for @Rewire_News on how Catholic hospitals, which follow religious directives, have turned away patients who are miscarrying and refused to terminate doomed pregnancies.…
As other hospitals have closed for the reasons @jackhealyNYT noted, Catholic hospitals have actually expanded, growing by 22 percent in recent years, according to @MergerWatch.
Read 6 tweets

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