At the federal level, the Hyde Amendment and a federal abortion ban both limit abortion access nationwide. Federal-level attacks on abortion access also include attempted 20-week bans.
Learn about federal bans and restrictions on abortion here — and read on to understand abortion bans and restrictions at the state level.
The Hyde Amendment withholds federal Medicaid funding from abortion nationwide, with extremely narrow exceptions. It's an intrusive and unfair restriction on insurance coverage for millions of people with low incomes, and it is an example of politicians interfering with access to safe and legal abortion.
Federal Abortion Ban
On April 18, 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the first-ever federal law banning abortion procedures and gave politicians the green light to interfere in people's reproductive health care decisions. The federal abortion ban criminalizes abortions in the second trimester of pregnancy that doctors say are often the safest and best way to protect a pregnant person's health.
This federal restriction on abortion affects more than the patients who need second-trimester abortions and the doctors who care for them: The Supreme Court's decision abandoned more than 30 years of precedent that put patients' health first when it came to laws that restrict access to abortion. We must stand up to politicians who want to restrict Americans' ability to make their own health care decisions in consultation with their doctors.
For years, anti-abortion politicians have been pushing an unconstitutional, nationwide 20-week abortion ban.
Meanwhile, states that passed 20-week bans have forced people into heartbreaking and tragic situations — some needing to end a pregnancy for serious medical reasons, but unable to do so.
Politics has no place preventing doctors and other health professionals from informing patients about all their health care options, and doctors should not be criminalized for providing constitutionally protected care.
While a majority of abortions in the U.S. occur in the first trimester, it is important that patients and their doctors have every medical option available. Laws banning abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy would take a deeply personal decision out of the hands of a patient and their doctor.
States with Abortion Bans and Restrictions
Attempts to restrict and even ban abortion at the state level are part of an ongoing effort to deny people their right to make their own personal medical decisions. Laws that restrict access to abortion hurt people’s health and endanger their safety.
Abortion bans and restrictions vary state-by-state, but they're all part of an ongoing effort to outlaw abortion completely in the United States. State legislatures' unprecedented and dangerous attacks on access to abortion include:
Restricting insurance coverage of abortion — and, in turn, taking away the comprehensive insurance coverage most people currently have
TRAP laws, which are targeted restrictions against abortion providers
Abortion bans, including unconstitutional bans at specific weeks of pregnancy and non-surgical abortion bans
Mandatory ultrasounds, waiting periods (of up to 3 days), and biased counseling before getting an abortion — all of which can entail multiple trips to the provider
So-called "personhood" measures
You can stay up to date on abortion bans by state — including restrictions within your own state — using our Abortion Access Tool.
Fighting State and Federal Abortion Bans
As state politicians across the country succeed in restricting access to abortion, real people are paying the price — particularly people with low incomes, who might not have the resources to drive long distances, arrange for lodging, and jump through all the other hoops that anti-abortion laws foist on them.
Planned Parenthood is committed to helping people avoid unintended pregnancies, but they do occur. For anyone facing an unintended pregnancy, prompt access to safe, legal abortion is imperative.
Planned Parenthood knows the only way to reduce the need for abortion is to reduce the number of unintended pregnancies. The real solution is to increase — not decrease — access to sex education and affordable birth control.