Opinion: Abortion Clinics in New Mexico Are Overwhelmed. They're Scheduling Abortion Services "Four Weeks Out."

Daniella Cressman

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There are no legal restrictions to abortion procedures in New Mexico, which has caused an enormous influx of patients seeking this type of care from Oklahoma and Texas.

As it stands, New Mexico is a largely rural state that struggles with immense poverty: clinics often have trouble tending to residents because they are frequently understaffed.

Right now, these clinics are overloaded with the amount of people who need their services.

Providers are having trouble keeping up with the number of patients coming in and the sheer amount of procedures that are needed.

Some patients are being forced to wait four weeks to get an abortion at a clinic in New Mexico which significantly impacts their options.

"...Women from Texas...were told those four weeks could mean they would become ineligible for abortion medication in lieu of a procedure, or they could have to spend two days at the Albuquerque clinic instead of one." —Jolie McCullough

Healthcare is already hard to come by in New Mexico as it is.

Clinics want to help women and others who are seeking these services from out-of-state, but more providers are needed.

This has led to a deep fear among many healthcare providers that New Mexico—a state which mostly flies under the radar—will garner unwanted attention from those who oppose abortion procedures and may want to jail abortion providers— across the country.

They're also terrified that providers in states where abortion has been banned will not save a pregnant person's life "for fear of criminal prosecution," according to Jolie McCullough

"Their priority is their patients, but leading doctors in New Mexico abortion care have other concerns during this time of upheaval in their field. They're worried about staffing shortages, already ever-present in the burnout much of the health care industry struggled with during the crush of the pandemic. And they're concerned about providers in states with abortion bans, who may not take steps to save a pregnant person's life for fear of criminal prosecution." —Jolie McCullough

New Mexico hospitals and abortion clinics need to have more resources—and more healthcare providers—especially right now.

Some healthcare procedures are free for those in the state who have insurance, but not for those from out of state. An abortion can cost $750-$1500. These people need help, and a lot of individuals are struggling financially right now.

We only have three abortion clinics in the state, and New Mexico is, unfortunately, not as equipped as it needs to be to serve this many patients. We need to make sure abortion clinics are well-staffed and have the resources they need to serve those who are seeking very important care in a timely manner.

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Canadian-American author writing about local politics, personal finance, & dining in Albuquerque.

Albuquerque, NM
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