Since a leaked Supreme Court decision in May, Americans have waited to hear about the fate of abortion rights. The U.S. Supreme Court is nearing an end of their current session, with Tuesday and Thursday of this week marked as opinion issuance days. With no decision Tuesday, Thursday looks like a strong possibility for the abortion opinion.
“We’re continuing to provide abortion care in Idaho for obviously as long as we are legally able to,” Idaho State Director for Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates, Mistie DelliCarpini-Tolman said.
While there is a possible scenario where the Supreme Court pushes its decision to next week, Planned Parenthood in Idaho is already transitioning its coverage to adapt to a strict Idaho trigger law on abortion rights.
“Idaho’s trigger ban would go into effect 30 days after the Supreme Court’s decision,” DelliCarpini-Tolman said.
A state law passed in 2020 effectively outlaws abortions in Idaho pending a reversal of Roe v. Wade; medical emergencies are the major exceptions. This means abortion would be outlawed 30 days after a Supreme Court ruling.
The quick action catches some women at a time when they are seeking an abortion as laws are changing. DelliCarpini-Tolman said they are closely working with patients.
“Our patient navigators work one-on-one with each patient to make sure that they will understand and really know how the Supreme Court decision will impact their appointments and work with them to either schedule an appointment in Idaho, or get them access to out-of-state care,” DelliCarpini-Tolman said. “Once that 30-day time period is over, as of today, all of our scheduled appointments will be able to go ahead as planned, and we don’t have any appointments scheduled beyond 30 days, as of right now.”
Women seeking an abortion a month from now could be in a tricky spot.
In response to the leaked Supreme Court opinion on abortion, Planned Parenthood decided to close its Boise location to better distribute resources across the region. The Boise location merged with an existing Meridian office.
“Two things are simultaneously true: One is that we know that the upcoming ruling is going to be devastating no matter what, no matter how narrowly or broadly they give their decision,” DelliCarpini-Tolman said. “The second thing that I really want to stress is that we’re prepared for this moment and ready to help patients get the care they need, even in a state as hostile as Idaho, either here in Idaho as long as we can, or in our bordering states, who are continuing to provide care after that decision.”
Planned Parenthood said it will continue to work with the Idaho community, but their care might look different than in years past.
It’s important to note there are other Idaho health care options for pregnancy care that do not offer abortions.
“You know, obviously it’s not going to be without added barriers. Like, that’s just what this decision is going to do, is force Idahoans to flee their state to access the care that they need. We know that and we’re here to try and make as few of those barriers there as possible,” DelliCarpini said. “So, hand-in-hand with our patients, making sure they can get the access to care that they need out of state if they have to and then come back to their home state in the communities that care for them, in the places where they live and make sure they get the follow-up care that they need.”