Liza, Liza Fuentes, Gut Mocker Institute discussed on Short Wave

Short Wave


Trigger laws. Laws that would go into effect soon after the Supreme Court decision and would severely restrict most abortions. Establishing near total bans or bans after 6 weeks of gestation. In the earliest, a lot of people know they're pregnant is around four weeks. You can ban abortion of people still get abortions that is important to know that people will be denied care and that that will put their health at risk. Liza Fuentes is a senior research scientist at the gut mocker institute. A research organization that focuses on sexual and reproductive health and supports abortion rights. As a researcher, Liza says access to a safe abortion is healthcare and protecting that access is protecting public health. Public health is a broader practice that ensures the health of communities. So what goes into public health isn't just collecting data and looking at risk factors, but partnering with communities and looking at broader priorities in communities to promote health. Within any community in the U.S., a lot of different types of people seek abortion care. 60% of people obtaining abortion care are already mothers. Three quarters of people obtaining abortion live with low incomes or below the poverty line, 61% of people obtaining abortion care women of color, one in four abortion patients identify as Catholic, about half of people who get an abortion are in their 20s. And in the U.S., according to the gut mocha institute, about one in four women will obtain an abortion by the time they're 45. That number changes by country for sure. But certainly there's no country on this planet where people who are pregnant do not require the ability to terminate a pregnancy when they no longer want to be pregnant. Given how common abortion is worldwide, it's striking how seldom our society talks about it. When statistically speaking, everyone knows someone who has had one. To lose access to this procedure, not only impacts an individual, but their family and community too. If a person is forced to take on the risks of pregnancy when they didn't want to, and they become sick or even die, that affects their children's health and well-being. It affects their partners health and well-being. And frankly, it affects the whole community when a person dies before their time because they couldn't get the care that they needed. Today on the show, the intersection of abortion and public health. How abortion fits into healthcare and the safety of pregnant people. This is part one of our discussion with Liza, in part two, we'll talk about what it looks like in practice for health agencies to treat abortion as a matter of public health. I'm Emily kwang, thanks for listening to shortwave. The daily science podcast from NPR. Support for NPR and the following message come from thorns collagen plus, which combines clinically studied ingredients such as collagen peptides, nicotinamide riboside, and botanical extracts for promoting beauty from within, using one scoop, collagen plus is designed to combat the visible signs of aging by reducing fine lines and wrinkles and promoting vibrant and smooth skin. Get 10% off your first order at Thorne dot com slash U slash NPR. Public health is the practice of ensuring the health and well-being of communities. That's done through data collection, but also a lot of on the ground work, partnering with community groups, and really thinking about what policies lead to the best health outcomes. For the population you're trying to serve. So in the case of abortion, the question becomes, how do we protect the health of a pregnant person? For Liza, it means looking at abortion as part of family planning. Family planning is the ability to decide if when and how to become pregnant, to parent, more specifically, more traditionally family planning refers to contraceptive services. So ensuring that anyone who can become pregnant is able to use contraceptives that meet their needs so that they can delay or plan for pregnancy when the timing is right for them. And abortion fits into family planning because it's an essential component of being able to decide if someone wants to continue to be pregnant and abortion is also critical for ensuring that people can avoid the adverse health effects of an unintended pregnancy or in some cases pregnancies where people develop conditions that threaten their life or health. From where you sit, why is abortion access a public health issue, doctor Fuentes? Abortion is a public health issue for a few reasons. First, like I said, abortions just a central and essential component of the full range of sexual reproductive health, care that everybody needs to be able to live a healthy life at every phase in their life. And then if someone does become pregnant, they need to be able to decide if they want to continue that pregnancy. People may think that contraceptives that are used before someone becomes pregnant could be a solution, for example, to abortion, but they're not half of people seeking abortion care report. Using a contraceptive in the month they became pregnant. Have half, yes. Wow. Yeah. And that doesn't depend on the contraceptives don't work. We're talking about people seeking abortion care. The vast majority of people using contraceptive care are not seeking abortions in the next month, but contraceptives are not a 100% foolproof, not even sterilization. And sterilization, what do you mean by that? Somebody could have a tubal ligation or a vasectomy and it can fail. Even that can fail. Right? It's not common, but if it does, abortion needs to be part of the options for somebody. In public health, we want to make sure people have the resources to make the best choices where they're at. This is public health thinking in action. It's this move where individual health is woven into the Tapestry of the broader community. And in thinking on the community level, lies a considers abortion and issue of racial and economic justice too. That's because most people who seek an abortion are low income, almost half live below the poverty line. So any policies designed to deny, delay or impede abortion access will affect those groups disproportionately because why attempts to restrict or deny abortion care can often be overcome by people if they simply have the money and the means to do so. So people can travel out of state to avoid an abortion restriction, but for people who are struggling to make ends meet who are disproportionately likely to be low income or uninsured, which are black and brown women in this country, they are more likely to experience the delays, the denial of abortion care and the harms that go along with it. States seek to restrict and ban abortion are the least likely to offer the social supports that people need to be able to raise children. They rank among the highest states for maternal mortality and infant mortality and finally abortion is a public health issue because it's a human right. And human rights frameworks and social justice frameworks really undergird the scientific practice of public health because our goal is not simply to observe and produce knowledge, but channel it towards eliminating health inequities and ensuring that everyone has the chance to be healthy in the community where they live. Since this leak, a lot of people, for maybe the first time in their lives, because of how long roe V wade has been around are wondering what it's removal would mean for pregnant people in the U.S.. If that were to happen, how do you think it would affect those who.

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