Florida’s 6-Week Abortion Ban Goes Into Effect May 1, Here’s What You Need To Know

As of May 1, the new 6-week abortion law will go into effect, and Options for Women will continue to provide pre-abortion care to our patients. We know there is a lot of fear and miscommunication surrounding this new law. Let’s get the facts straight. The law prohibits abortions after six weeks gestation, with exceptions for women who are victims of rape, incest, human trafficking, or whose baby has a diagnosis of a fatal fetal abnormality. The most effective way to confirm the gestational age of your pregnancy is to have an ultrasound. At Options for Women, we offer free, early ultrasounds to determine how far along you are.

In the case of an ectopic pregnancy, an abortion is NOT the answer. An ectopic pregnancy is when the fetus implants outside the uterus and can be life-threatening. The patient should go immediately to the emergency room for care.

At Options for Women, all of our medical services are free. Who doesn’t love free? We offer same-day or next-day appointments. Our appointments typically last one hour and include a visit with a registered nurse to gather medical history and conduct an ultrasound. The nurse can also test for 5 types of STDs –  Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, HIV, and Hepatitis C. The nurse will also provide information on the abortion pill and answer questions.

At the end of the appointment, a Patient Advocate will provide referrals to any needed resources, i.e. food, housing, medical care, and counseling. If the nurse determines another ultrasound is needed, one will be scheduled within 24-48 hours.

Q. What Is Florida’s Heartbeat Protection Act?

This bill will limit abortions to no more than 6 weeks gestation with exceptions. Those exceptions are rape, incest, human trafficking and fatal fetal abnormality.

Q. Will The 6 Week Bill Limit Miscarriage Care?

A. No. Miscarriage is not an elective abortion. Therefore, women will not be denied medical care for miscarriages. 

Q. Can Women Get Treatment For Ectopic Pregnancies?

A. Yes. Ectopic pregnancy care is not an elective abortion, and an abortion will not resolve that serious medical condition. Women will not be denied medical care for ectopic pregnancies. 

Q. What If I Don’t See A Heartbeat?

A. There are a number of reasons a heartbeat may not be detected. If you cannot confirm the pregnancy, there is no need to pursue an abortion yet. Our medical staff will schedule a repeat ultrasound for you within a few days. 

Q. Can I Get The Abortion Pill By Mail?

A. No. Getting the abortion pill by mail at any stage of pregnancy is illegal in the state of Florida.  

Q. What If I Take The Abortion Pill And Change My Mind?

A. Medical abortion is a two-part process. If you begin the chemical abortion process and have taken the first pill only, you can still change your mind. Call the 24/7 Abortion Pill Reversal Hotline at (877) 558-0333 or visit www.abortionpillreversal.com to speak with an on-call healthcare professional who can connect you with a doctor or medical provider in your area to discuss the abortion pill reversal process.

Q. What Should I Do If I’m Pregnant?

A. If you have a positive pregnancy test, the next step is to schedule a medical-grade pregnancy test and pregnancy confirmation ultrasound. Then, based on the results and the data of the pregnancy, you can explore all your pregnancy options. If you were planning to have an abortion but are past 6 weeks gestation, we have resources to help you. 

Call (863) 393-6988 to schedule a free pregnancy test and ultrasound or to discuss your options with a Registered Nurse.

Options for Women offers free pregnancy testing, ultrasounds, STD testing, pre-termination exams, post-abortion counseling and wellness referrals. We have offices in Lakeland and Bartow, Florida. Please call for an appointment (863) 393-6988. Walk-ins are welcome.