National Partnership for Women & Families

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Datapoints: States Mandate Abortion Delays, Access to Preventive Services Uneven, More

Datapoints: States Mandate Abortion Delays, Access to Preventive Services Uneven, More

May 23, 2014 — Our snapshot of women's health graphics includes a state-by-state map of mandatory delays before abortion care, plus a preventive services infographic and a graph documenting a historic drop in teen pregnancies.

Mandatory Delays


Twenty-six states require that women wait a specific period of time between receiving state-mandated counseling about abortion and obtaining the procedure, according to a Huffington Post map based on data from the Guttmacher Institute. Some states require abortion providers to give women inaccurate information during the counseling, such as stating that abortion is tied to breast cancer or infertility.

Most mandatory delays are 24 hours, but Missouri could soon join Utah and South Dakota in requiring a 72-hour wait (Scheller, Huffington Post, 5/15).

Preventive Services


An infographic from the Kaiser Family Foundation encapsulates women's access to key preventive services, including contraception and cancer screenings.

KFF's research suggests the Affordable Care Act's (PL 111-148) coverage of many preventive services without consumer cost-sharing could help improve access. For example, among insured women, 79% received mammograms and 74% received Pap tests, compared with rates of 43% and 54%, respectively, among uninsured women (JAMA, 5/14).

Teen Pregnancy

Since peaking in the early 1990s, rates of teen pregnancy, births and abortions have declined substantially, as shown in this Guttmacher Institute graph.

A Guttmacher study found that the pregnancy rate among young women ages 15 through 19 decreased by 51% from 1990 to 2010. Similarly, the teen birth rate dropped by 44% since a peak in 1991, and the teen abortion rate decreased by 66% since 1988, Guttmacher found (Guttmacher release, 5/5).