Restrictions on Public Funding of Abortion

One way states regulate abortion access is through a patchwork of restrictions on government funding of abortion services. These can include broad restrictions on any funds passing through state agencies, bans on the use of government facilities for abortion or participation by government employees in the provision of abortion services, and restrictions on Medicaid funding of abortion. States may also prohibit abortion providers and affiliated organizations from receiving any government funding or state agencies from contracting with abortion providers. Additionally, some states restrict funding of abortions in state-funded insurance plans for government employees. Under current federal policy, states are required to use state Medicaid funds for abortion services in the limited circumstances of life endangerment, rape, or incest.

NOTE: The Medicaid restrictions captured in this dataset are based on statutes and regulations that explicitly regulate the use of Medicaid funds for abortion services (Question 8). Laws that broadly restrict the use of any public funds for abortion services, which may include Medicaid funding, are captured separately (Question 2). Additionally, the laws captured in this dataset may differ from policies included in state Medicaid policy manuals, which are outside the scope of this dataset.

This dataset explores abortion regulations in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia in effect as of December 1, 2018, as well as case law and attorney general opinions that affect the enforceability of these laws.

This dataset is a part of a suite of 16 datasets created by the Policy Surveillance Program of the Center for Public Health Law Research in collaboration with subject matter experts from the Guttmacher Institute, Resources for Abortion Delivery (RAD), American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), National Abortion Federation (NAF), and Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA), who conceptualized and developed the Abortion Law Project. If you need broader contextual information on state laws and policies, national level information, or data and evidence related to abortion and other reproductive health issues, please contact the Guttmacher Institute at info@guttmacher.org.

Disclaimer: The information contained herein does not constitute legal advice. If you have questions regarding your legal rights or obligations, contact an attorney. If you are an abortion provider seeking legal compliance guidance, the following collaborating organizations may be able to assist you: ACLU, CRR, PPFA (for affiliated health centers), NAF, and Regulatory Assistance for Abortion Providers (a project of RAD).

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