Global Abortion Access After Roe

In the past thirty years, sixty countries have expanded access to abortion care as an underpinning of maternal health. The 2022 U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade made the United States the fourth country ever to decrease access to abortion—and the world took notice. Some countries have since reinforced protections for abortion care, while others have moved to further restrict it.

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  • Gabrielle Sierra
    Director, Podcasting

Asher Ross - Supervising Producer

Markus Zakaria - Audio Producer and Sound Designer

Molly McAnany - Associate Podcast Producer

Episode Guests
  • Onikepe Owolabi
    Director of International Research, Guttmacher Institute
  • Patty Skuster
    Reproductive Health Law Policy Researcher and Consultant, University of Pennsylvania

Show Notes

There is broad medical consensus that access to safe abortion and reproductive care saves womens’ lives. While the United States has been a world leader and major funder of foreign health initiatives for decades, on this issue it is moving in the opposite direction of global trends. Some experts now fear that the overturning of Roe v. Wade, a landmark decision that established the constitutional right to abortion for nearly fifty years in the United States, could prove a useful tool for countries seeking to limit or decrease access to abortion, such as Nigeria, which cited the Dobbs ruling as a reason to rollback its Safe Abortion Act in Lagos State. But it could also provoke the opposite effect, serving as motivation for abortion protections in countries such as France, which has since enshrined the right to abortion in its constitution. 



From CFR


Mariel Ferragamo, “Roe’s Repeal Inspires Global Abortion Rollbacks in Other Countries,” Think Global Health


Women and Foreign Policy Program Staff, “Abortion Law: Global Comparisons


From Our Guests


Onikepe Owolabi, Ann Biddlecom, and Hannah S. Whitehead, “Health Systems’ Capacity to Provide Post-abortion Care: a Multicountry Analysis Using Signal Functions,” Lancet Global Health


Patty Skuster, Heidi Moseson, and Jamila Perritt, “Self-Managed Abortion: Aligning Law and Policy With Medical Evidence,” International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics 


Patty Skuster, “Countering the Anti-Science of Abortion Regulation,” American Journal of Public Health


Read More


Abortion Care Guideline,” World Health Organization


Daniela Santamariña, Brittany Shammas, and Aaron Steckelberg, “The Most Common Abortion Procedures and When They Occur,” Washington Post


The World’s Abortion Laws,” Center for Reproductive Rights


Tracking Abortion Bans Across the Country,” New York Times


Watch and Listen

Abortion Rights Rollback in US Could Ripple Across Globe,” Voice of America

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