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Preterm is Ohio’s largest abortion clinic and one of the largest in the country, a national leader in patient-centered care with a reputation for excellence. We incorporated as a non-profit in 1973, soon after Roe v. Wade legalized abortion. Today we’re a licensed ambulatory surgery center with a staff of nearly 50 professionals committed to offering the highest quality respectful, nonjudgmental care. For over 40 years, we have been an innovative leader in health care. We championed patient-centered care long before the concept entered mainstream medicine. To keep abortion accessible, we’ve provided over $14 million in financial assistance to our low-income patients. We have trained hundreds of OB/GYN residents from around the country in abortion care. Preterm is recognized nationally as a vocal advocate for reproductive health and rights. Our innovative My Abortion, My Life campaign has been included in discussions of abortion stigma work at conferences around the country. In 2014, we expanded our services to offer more comprehensive sexual health care. We offer birth control counseling; testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections (STIs); and wellness care. Looking forward, we are in the process of expanding our services again to provide health services specifically for the LGBTQ community.
Presentation: Stick it to the Stigma: Lessons Learned from 40 Years of Fighting Stigma in Abortion Care
Time: Breakout Session 2
In this presentation we will discuss the steps we take to address stigma inside Preterm, the largest abortion clinic in Ohio and one of the largest in the country, and in the care we give our patients. Like abortion providers, providers of care in the LGBTQ community operate in a space filled with stigma that can be perpetuated in the media, by religious groups, and throughout the broader medical community. From the training of staff to the layout of our building, we have carefully considered our patients’ feelings as we have created a welcoming, safe, inclusive space. People across the LGBTQ spectrum need access to reproductive health care that they may not be able to get in many settings. The lessons we have learned over 40 years of providing respectful abortion care can be useful to any provider who wants to offer respectful, culturally competent care. Moreover, these tools have helped us prepare for our expansion into LGBTQ health services such as wellness care, STD testing and treatment, and birth control.
1. To understand the intersection between LGBTQ health care and abortion care.
2. To understand basic steps to address stigma in a clinical setting.
3. To identify some of the barriers that people in the LGBTQ community face in accessing abortion care.