Temporary Abortion Ban In Texas Found To Delay Care, Create Risks
The number of women seeking care in other states increased from 157 in February 2020 to 947 in April 2020, and second-trimester abortions jumped 61% after the lifting of the ban. News reports look at spikes in overdose deaths in four Ohio counties, and pandemic news, as well.
Second-Trimester Abortions Increased 61% After Texas Lifted Temporary Ban, Study Shows
Texas’ temporary abortion ban this spring amid the pandemic prevented some women from obtaining the services and delayed others until later in their pregnancies, exposing them to increased health risks, a new study has found. Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s March 22, 2020 executive order to clear space for COVID-19 patients put a stop to all surgeries and procedures that were not considered “medically necessary,” which by the state's definition included abortion care. Abortion providers sued to overturn the ban — resulting in dizzying back-and-forth decisions as the case wound its way through the courts — but the issue became moot when the order expired in April 2020 and clinics resumed offering care. (Goldenstein, 1/4)
Overdose Deaths Butler County Northern Kentucky Soar In 2020 Pandemic
Four Cincinnati area counties saw double-digit percentage leaps in overdose deaths in 2020, preliminary records show. A surge in overdose deaths experienced across the country is a scenario that addiction treatment providers and advocates predicted as efforts to mitigate the opioid epidemic were altered or swept away while the COVID-19 pandemic raged across America. Northern Kentucky’s Boone, Campbell and Kenton counties as of Tuesday were on track to face a 20% jump in overdose deaths over 2019, Kentucky Injury Prevention Research Center records show. Butler County in Southwest Ohio had a 10.6% rise in suspected or confirmed overdose deaths over last year, coroner's records show. (DeMio, 1/4)
In covid-related news —
CDC Says Arizona Has US's Highest Rate Of New COVID-19 Infections
Arizona has become the state with the highest rate of new COVID-19 infections, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) tracker reported Monday. The CDC's U.S. map indicated Monday evening that the Copper State had surpassed neighboring California as well as other hotspots in South Carolina and Tennessee to surge into the lead with a spiking rate of new cases. The state is now reporting an average daily case rate of more than 121 per 100,000 people, the only state in the U.S. averaging more than 100 new cases a day per 100,000 residents. (Bowden, 1/4)
The State Lawmaker Who Died Of An Aneurysm Had COVID-19, But Were The Two Conditions Related?
State Rep. Mike Reese was diagnosed with a mild case of COVID-19 a month ago, and his symptoms already were fading when he announced his positive test results on Dec. 7. On Saturday, the Republican who represented Westmoreland and Somerset Counties died of an apparent brain aneurysm, according to a statement from House Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff (R., Centre/Mifflin). Were the two maladies related? COVID has been blamed for a variety of health problems outside the lungs — including in the brain. But not aneurysms, said Barbara Albani, medical director for neurointerventional surgery at the ChristianaCare health system in Delaware. (Avril, 1/4)
Louisiana Lawmakers Consider COVID-19 Plan For Next Election
Louisiana’s top elections official is asking lawmakers Tuesday to back his proposal to broaden the mail-in balloting options for spring municipal elections and two upcoming special congressional elections because of the coronavirus pandemic. Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin wants to use the same expansion of absentee-by-mail voting that was in place for the summer and fall elections, including the November presidential competition. (Deslatte, 1/5)