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By Jerome S. Legge

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Additional resources for Abortion policy: an evaluation of the consequences for maternal and infant health

Sample text

Also, there has been much investigation on the impact of Medicaid restrictions on abortion in the United States. This has been a very complex situation to analyze because it is difficult to isolate the Medicaid-eligible population. In addition, the policy has been implemented by no means uniformly throughout the country. Some states have continued the Medicaid program by appropriating state funds for abortion. Moreover, there have been a number of court decisions and Congressional actions which have modified Medicaid since the original restriction of August 1977.

Also, Cates and associates found that after six weeks' gestation, "any delay in performing an abortion increases the risk of morbidity and mortality to the pregnant woman,"9 using suction. During the second trimester, the risk of death and complications increases several-fold. Over a decade ago, Cushner stated the problem succinctly.

20 In general, the health effect has been shown to be favorable, including a decrease in death from abortion, and maternal, fetal, neonatal, and infant mortality. In addition, investigators have pointed out a number of other benefits from this law that are indirectly related to maternal health. These include declines in the number of live births and birth rates, and reductions in out-of-wedlock births. Page 9 Considering the United States as a whole, a number of observers have pointed to the apparently beneficial impact of the 1973 Supreme Court decision.

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