CLINICS

DID YOU KNOW?

The reasons women give for having an abortion underscore their understanding of the responsibilities of parenthood and family life.

FAQ

We believe you make the best decisions when you have the most accurate information. We encourage you to call and ask any questions that you may have, regarding our services. Below are a few commonly asked questions:

Is abortion safe?
Does abortion hurt?
What do you give for pain?
Will I be able to have children later?
How far into pregnancy can I have an abortion?
How early in the pregnancy can I have an abortion?
What’s better, the surgical abortion or the pill abortion method?
Will there be protesters standing outside?
Can anyone come with me? Can they come into the abortion?
Is there a waiting period? Can I come in right now?
I am 16 years old. Do I have to tell my mother?
Is this confidential?
Do you take insurance?
Do you offer financial help or payment plans?
Do you take checks?
Can I use my mother’s credit card?

Frequently Asked Questions about Abortion

1. Is abortion safe?

Yes. There are many false myths surrounding abortion from people who do not believe you should have the choice. While every surgical procedure involves some risk, the truth is that abortion is one of the safest and most common out-patient surgeries in the U.S. – 10 times safer than carrying a pregnancy to term and delivering vaginally. 1 out of every 3 American women will have at least one abortion in her lifetime. 60% of the women who choose abortion are already mothers. The woman who chooses abortion today, may well choose parenthood later.

At Whole Woman’s Health, we provide the best medical care and a range of reproductive healthcare. Abortion care is our specialty, with outstanding physicians and trained, caring staff. You will be well cared for while you are with us and we provide a follow-up appointment 2 weeks after your abortion, to make sure you’re feeling physically, mentally and emotionally well enough to continue your regular activities. Here, we take the extra steps necessary to care for your health. Taking care of your reproductive health will always be a good thing.

2. Does abortion hurt?

Many women describe the feeling as similar to menstrual cramps. Every woman is different so we offer several pain management options to help you feel comfortable. We also provide a calm and relaxing environment, the option of having a friend, partner or family member with you and our supportive staff available to address your worries or concerns. Being in such caring surrounding reduces anxiety and can help you both relax and feel safe and well cared for.

3. What do you give for pain?

First, we offer support, comfort and relaxation. Since each woman is different, we offer a variety of comfort medication. Take-Home pain medication is commonly prescribed for medication abortion, and our surgical patients are usually given the option of Nitrous Oxide or IV Sedation during the procedure. In Whole Woman’s Surgical Center, we also offer the option of general anesthesia. Please let us know if you have any specific requests or concerns, and we will be sure to address them.

4. Will I be able to have children later?

One of the myths surrounding abortion is that abortion causes infertility. Another myth is that the more abortions a woman has, the more infertile she becomes. There is no scientific evidence, whatsoever, that abortion is in any way linked to infertility.

5. How far into pregnancy can I have an abortion?

Each state in the US has their own set of laws regarding abortion care.

Currently, in Maryland, our Baltimore office offers abortion care from 3 to 20 weeks of pregnancy.

Whole Woman’s Health clinics throughout Texas offer abortion care from 3 to 16 weeks of pregnancy.

The state of Texas requires all abortion procedures over 16 weeks to be performed in what’s called an Ambulatory Surgical Center (ASC).

Whole Woman’s Surgical Center, our ambulatory surgical center in San Antonio, opened its doors to women in August 2010, offering abortion care from 3 to 20 weeks of pregnancy. If you believe you are 16 weeks or more into the pregnancy and live in Texas, please contact Whole Woman’s Surgical Center to discuss your options. Additionally, many women with special needs or who reside in a state that stops abortion care coverage below 16 weeks of pregnancy travel to us for their care. Often, we see women from Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Mexico. Please note that in the state of Texas, we are unable to offer elective abortions past 20 weeks of pregnancy (21 weeks and 6 days since your last menstrual period) due to the recent passage of House Bill 2. 

If you aren’t sure how far into the pregnancy you are, contact your nearest WWH clinic where you can get a Free pregnancy test and, if you like, an ultrasound to help determine your length of pregnancy.

6. How early in the pregnancy can I have an abortion?

Technology now allows us to know we are pregnant almost immediately it seems, even before we have missed a period. Terminating your pregnancy early offers you 2 options – medication abortion which begins with a pill in the office and is completed in the privacy of your own home and surgical abortion. If you are anxious, come in and have a Free pregnancy test to see if you are pregnant and, if you like an ultrasound for more information about how far into the pregnancy you may be. We might be able to schedule your appointment right then, if you are at least 3 weeks pregnant. From 1 – 3 weeks of gestation, ultrasound may not be able to detect a pregnancy in the uterus. If we’re not able to view the pregnancy clearly under ultrasound, we will schedule your appointment for 1-2 weeks in the future.

To start figuring this out on your own, try to remember when the first day of your last normal period was, and count up, 5 weeks. The reason you count up 5 weeks instead of 3 is that in a 28-day cycle, women normally conceive ~2 weeks past the first day of their last period. If you need help figuring it out, please give us a call or come to see us and we’ll help you estimate your length of pregnancy.

7. What’s better, the surgical abortion or the pill abortion method?

Both medication (the “abortion pill”) and surgical procedures are excellent, safe methods. Some patients prefer the convenience of the surgical procedure because in 1-day they know their abortion is complete and can return to regular activities. Some women prefer completing the abortion in the comfort of their own home and setting the timing of their abortion around their work, childcare or life-demands schedule. The fees for both are comparable and insurance and funding sources can help cover either choice.

It is important for you to figure out what is most important for your abortion experience. Call us and ask us questions about either procedure, so that you can determine which method best suits you.

8. Will there be protesters standing outside?

Abortion clinic are, unfortunately, sometimes the target of local anti-abortion campaigns. There may sometimes be protestors out on the sidewalk before you drive into our parking lot. They may try to stop your car, hand you packets with false information, or carry signs that are intended to gross you out.

A few important things to remember if you see protestors outside of our clinic:

1.) You do not have to talk to them. Their goal is to persuade you to leave your appointment. If you’d like to talk about other pregnancy options, trust that you can talk to us about these as well. We are here to serve your needs, and we trust your decision, no matter what it is.

2.) They are not allowed on the property.

3.) If you at all feel uncomfortable about driving into our clinic, call us. We will be more than happy to come greet you and escort you inside of the building.

9. Can anyone come with me? Can they come into the abortion?

We know it often feels good to have someone familiar with us. We welcome your friend, partner or family member if you wish to have them with you during your appointment day. Sometimes, one person is welcomed into the surgery room with you, however we leave this up to the discretion of the Physician.

*Unfortunately, regulations for Surgical Centers do not permit 3rd parties in the procedure rooms. There will be a female staff member there with you for support throughout the entire process and your support person can join you in recovery.

10. Is there a waiting period? Can I come in right now?

In WWH of Baltimore, we are most often able to offer you abortion care on the same day that you call or walk-in. Since we do not offer abortion care all days of the week, we will do our best to accommodate you. Calling ahead can ensure your appointment, of course.

The State of Texas currently requires all women seeking an abortion to undergo a 24-hour waiting period before their procedure. Due to this law, walk-in appointments for an abortion are no longer available in our Texas clinics. Please plan ahead when you decide to make your appointment and remember that you will need to make your appointment 24 hours before you wish to come in to our clinic. Texas has many laws and regulations surrounding your abortion, so please call and let us assist you.

If you’re coming into any of our clinics for a pregnancy test, Emergency Contraception, an ultrasound or many of our other services, feel free to come in between the hours of 9 and 5.

11. I am 16 years old. Do I have to tell my mother?

We support families and are willing to help you find a way to talk with your parents. There is a great handout, Mom, Dad, I’m Pregnant that also helps communication get started and end well. However, we also understand this is not possible for every family, or every teen.

Whole Woman’s Health of Baltimore is accountable to the State of Maryland that has a parental notification law that can be waived under certain circumstances by the physician who is seeing you that day.

The State of Texas requires minors to have the consent of one parent before an abortion is performed. “Minor” in the State of Texas is defined as any individual that is 17 years of age, or under. We need one parental guardian, as well as a birth certificate and a form of identification for both of you to go through with the appointment.

In Texas, if you find yourself in a position where you can’t go to your parents for consent, there is also the option of receiving what’s called “Judicial Bypass.” Essentially, a judge would be able to grant consent, if you’re able to give a justifiable reason that you can’t go to your parent. Jane’s Due Process is an organization in Texas that helps guide minors through this process, and will even provide you with free legal representation at the Courthouse. Please call either a Whole Woman’s Health clinic nearest you, or Jane’s Due Process (1-866-www-jane) for more information.

12. Is this confidential?

Whole Woman’s Health clinics go to extreme efforts to ensure patient confidentiality. We understand that this is a private healthcare decision between a woman and her healthcare provider. Any and all information obtained by Whole Woman’s Health will be kept confidential, unless requested by a patient with a corresponding valid ID and a medical release request.

Frequently Asked Questions about Payment

1. Do you take insurance?

All Whole Woman’s Health clinics are currently contracted with a number of insurance carriers.

Whole Woman’s Surgical Center is undergoing specialized credentialing, but we will be happy to provide you with the proper documentation so that you can file with your carrier.

Every insurance plan and coverage is a bit different. Some women only owe a co-pay and some women only receive coverage for a portion of the visit. If you’d like to know more about your insurance coverage, call us and we will help you figure it out.

 

2. Do you offer financial help or payment plans?

Whole Woman’s Health staff members are exceptional at helping women in need obtain funding and assistance. We are not set up to do payment plans, but we are dedicated funding advocates for women. Whether it’s by personally helping you brainstorm ways to raise money, or working overtime ourselves to call funding agencies on your behalf, we will do all we can to help you through this time. We can complete eligibility for some funding at the same time you call to make your appointment.

3. Do you take checks?

No, but we do accept cash, all major credit/debit cards, money orders, and cashiers checks.

4. Can I use my mother’s credit card?

If you’re using another person’s credit card, they will need to be present during the time of payment, and will need a valid ID. Remember, they could simply use PayPal to help you out from wherever they are sitting.


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