A woman can get the morning-after pill without a prescription and keep some in her medicine cabinet for emergencies. Her smartphone sends birth control reminders. Or, if she prefers, a matchstick-size implant gives her no-hassle contraception for years at a time.
Surgical abortion has become safer, employing tools that use vacuum pressure rather than scraping. There’s increasing use of the medication alternative: Ending a pregnancy with mifepristone and misoprostol now accounts for about 30% of U.S. abortions.
“It’s safe and comfortable,” said Missouri resident Lexi Moore, 30, who ended a pregnancy in September with a prescription from Planned Parenthood. “You get to sit in the comfort of your home instead of doing it in a clinic or in a back alley. … You will have cramps, like a heavy period. But it’s worth it in the end, and you have control over that.”
Moore had to drive 70 miles to pick up her prescription and, lacking insurance, paid $800 out of pocket. But she welcomed the outcome, and wrote thank-you cards to the clinic.