This weekend’s episode of the investigative public radio show Reveal looks at the challenges facing Kelly Flynn, an abortion provider with a clinic in Greensboro as she navigates the complicated post-Roe v. Wade landscape. Reporter Laura Morel spoke with WFDD about her coverage of the issue.

Interview highlights: 

On the background for the story:

"Last year, I learned that an abortion provider in the South who I previously wrote about — she owns three clinics in North Carolina in Charlotte, Raleigh and Greensboro, and she owns one in Florida. And these are both states that at some point were bastions of abortion access before Roe was overturned. But since the fall of Roe lawmakers in both states have passed laws to severely restrict abortion, North Carolina has a 12-week ban Florida has got a 15-week ban... Her solution for this was to open a clinic, a new clinic in Virginia where abortions are allowed up to 24 weeks, and her clinic finally opened this month, and we were able to be there for opening day."

On the reception when the clinic opened:

"So far, her new clinic hasn't faced any kind of local or state opposition. There has been some opposition in other parts of Virginia. In the Bristol area, back in 2022, there was a clinic that moved from the Tennessee side of Bristol, which had banned abortion into the Virginia side to continue providing services and there was some backlash and some legal challenges. There is one anti-abortion group in particular, the Family Foundation of Virginia, that has been sort of advocating for these zoning ordinances that would, you know, basically restrict where abortion clinics can be located in Virginia. And, you know, it's an ongoing project for them."

On the current status of abortion in North Carolina:

"Currently, North Carolina has a 12-week ban. When Roe was in place, North Carolina actually allowed abortions up to 20 weeks. But currently, it's a 12-week ban. And I know that the other challenge that a lot of patients or all patients in North Carolina are facing is a 72-hour waiting period where basically patients have to go in person twice to clinics. So they have to go the first time, I believe, to sign some consent forms and you know, meet in person with clinic staff. And then 72 hours later, they return for their actual appointment for their procedure. So I know that that's causing a lot of challenges, especially for out-of-state patients who might be coming from neighboring southern states. You know, we're talking about people who have to plan ahead and figure out, you know, taking time off of work and daycare and missing school, to be able to get an abortion and sort of planning out having three days to be able to do that. So I know that that has definitely caused barriers. ... In Virginia, there is no waiting period. So that is another advantage to being an abortion provider right now, in Virginia."

On how the 12-week restriction in North Carolina has changed access to abortion:

"If you're a patient from out of state, and you're below that 12-week limit, North Carolina is still an option for you. One thing that's happening, post-Roe, and this is something that I know there's still research being gathered on but you know, historically, most abortions, the vast majority of them happen in the first trimester, right? But because of all of these restrictions in so many states, because of these bans and these regulations, it's causing delays in when people can get an appointment at a clinic. So someone who might have been able to get you know access during their first trimester pre-Roe might not be so lucky now."



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