Kansas Abortions Drop 30% in Five Years, Down 6% in 2011

State   |   Kathy Ostrowski   |   Apr 2, 2012   |   11:09AM   |   Topeka, KS

From an abortion total of 11,271 in 2006 to a reduction by 30% to 7,851 in 2011, the state health department (KDHE) figures show the fifth year of less abortion in Kansas.

Significantly fewer women actually complete a Kansas abortion after receiving informed consent materials as evidenced by the certifications submitted by clinics to KDHE. In 2010, there were 8,338 abortions after 8,615 women received initial paperwork inside clinics. In 2011, 8,033 certifications were filed, with only 7,851 women returning for an abortion.

The Kansas City Star reports that Peter Brownlie, president of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri, attributes “much of the reduction to the shooting death of Wichita abortion provider George Tiller, who specialized in late-term procedures.” Impossible! Tiller was killed in May 2009 and all abortions “missing due to his absence” were noted in 2009 and finalized in 2010, the first full year without his doors open.

In round numbers, 8,600 women walked into 3 Kansas clinics in 2010 and only 8,000 walked into the same 3 Kansas clinics in 2011 and that had nothing to do with Tiller, nor with increased contraception–another Brownlie assertion.

There may be a direct reason 600 fewer women even stepped inside Kansas abortion clinics– existence of the best state “Woman’s Right to Know” website in the nation, including

  • comprehensive 4-D ultrasound video /audio providing real-time movies of the developing unborn child;
  • clearly marked directory headings for free ultrasounds and help for challenging pregnancies;
  • better written information describing the unborn child’s body systems and beating heart;
  • a 24-hour hotline.

Chemical abortion using the RU486 protocol (mifepristone) dropped 26%, from a high of 2,202 in 2010 (26.4% of annual Kansas abortions) to 1,624 in 2011 (20.7% of annual Kansas abortions). The decrease may stem from one of the three Kansas abortion clinics– Aid for Women– which put on its website that it no longer would offer such abortions. This announcement occurred right after the clinic failed initial qualifications to become inspected and licensed under a new clinic regulation bill. The licensure bill was put under injunction July 1, 2011.

Strengthened by the passage of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child law in 2011, no abortions after 22 weeks gestation (LMP) were recorded in Kansas.  KDHE received reports from other states of 8 Kansas women who did obtain abortions in the latter half of pregnancy in other states, although it is not known whether all 49 states record such data and forward it to KDHE.

Possibly reflecting the 2011 law requiring two parent consent (instead of one-parent notice) for minors, fewer teens under 18 years of age were aborted in 2011 (341) than in 2010 (396). Unfortunately, the number of abortions under age 14 was 8 in 2010 and 9 in 2011.

Also possibly contributing to lower abortion numbers was another new Kansas law, preventing insurance plans from paying for elective abortions unless “riders” were purchased. A notification recently issued from Blue Cross Blue Shield “First Choice” plan offers an elective abortion rider for $6.95 per month, with an eight month waiting period before coverage begins.

LifeNews.com Note: Kathy Ostrowski is the legislative director for Kansans for Life, a statewide pro-life group.