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  • Ryan Wittler

Nearly Half of OB-GYN Residency Programs May Lack Abortion Training If Roe Is Overturned


A new study from researchers at UC San Francisco and UCLA has found that nearly half of all medical students in obstetrics and gynecology residency programs in the U.S. may not get abortion training if Roe v. Wade is overturned in an upcoming Supreme Court decision.

Study highlights:

The researchers mapped OB-GYN residency programs throughout the U.S. and highlighted the ones in the 26 states that the Guttmacher Institute expects to ban abortion if the Supreme Court overturns Roe in its decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization this summer.

The study found 128 of the 286 (44.8%) OB-GYN programs in the analysis were located in states that are expected to ban abortion if Roe is overturned.

  • That amounts to 2,638 of the 6,007 (43.9%) medical students in accredited OB-GYN programs not receiving any abortion training, according to the researchers.

The impact:

In 2020, 92% of OB-GYN students in the U.S. reported having access to at least some level of abortion training.

  • If Roe is overturned, the authors predict that number “would plummet to at most 56%.”

  • The team also believes their estimate is likely an undercount, as it doesn’t include family medicine and other specialties.

Why it matters:

The researchers say losing abortion training will have far-reaching impacts, particularly on patients of clinicians who are trained in states without it.

  • They also say abortion training helps clinicians develop other important soft skills, like bedside manner, counseling, and trauma-informed care.

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