116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
DES MOINES — The possibility that the U.S. Supreme Court could overturn Roe v. Wade, thus sending abortion laws and regulations back to the individual states, raises questions about those laws in Iowa. Here are answers to some of those questions.
What are Iowa’s current abortion regulations?
Abortion is legal in Iowa except after 20 weeks of pregnancy, after which abortion is legal only in cases of a threat to life or health.
What happens in Iowa if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade?
Nothing, immediately. The state’s current abortion regulations would remain because the Iowa Supreme Court has ruled abortion is a protected fundamental right under the state constitution. Iowa Republicans are attempting to nullify that ruling with a proposed amendment to the Iowa Constitution.
What is the status of abortion cases in front of the Iowa Supreme Court?
The Iowa Supreme Court has struck down two recent Republican-written abortion restrictions. In 2018, the court struck down a three-day waiting period before a woman could have an abortion, and in 2019 the court struck down a ban on abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which can be as early as six weeks into a pregnancy, often before a woman knows she is pregnant. The court has not yet ruled on a third case, on which it heard oral arguments in February, that would require a 24-hour waiting period before an abortion.
How many abortions are performed in Iowa?
There were 4,058 abortions performed in the state in 2020, a 14 percent increase from the previous year, according to the most recent data from the Iowa Department of Public Health.
How many abortion providers are there in Iowa?
According to multiple sources that track abortion-related data, there appears to be six abortion providers in Iowa. That does not include hospitals that may perform late-term abortions.
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