MANILA, Philippines—Last week, in a historic decision, the US Supreme Court shocked the world as it officially overturned the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that recognized women’s constitutional right to abortion.
The 1973 ruling in the landmark Supreme Court case known as Roe v. Wide guarantees a woman’s right to an abortion in the United States in the absence of any federal laws on the procedure.
In the case known as Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the 1992 court decision protects access to abortion until “viability”—a period when the fetus can survive outside the womb—typically between 22 and 24 weeks of pregnancy.
READ: Abortion: how things stand in US as court prepares to rule
On June 24, however, it was clear that millions of women in the US would soon lose their constitutional right to abortion following the Supreme Court’s decision to reverse the 50-year-old Roe v. Wade decision.
READ: U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, curtailing abortion rights
While the Vatican praised the ruling, it sent a chilling message to other nations—with Britain, France, and some other countries describing the ruling as a step backward—as it challenged the world to reflect on life issues.
In the Philippines, where abortions remain illegal, many non-government organizations and advocates have expressed their disappointment in the ruling—as well as their support and solidarity with fellow advocates in the US who are still pushing for the right to abort, despite the recent ruling.
In this article, following the latest developments on abortion laws in the US, INQUIRER.net will dive deep into abortion and the topics and issues surrounding it—including abortion provisions and unsafe abortion data across the globe and in the Philippines.
What you should know about abortion
Abortion is a common health procedure that ends a pregnancy.
“Abortion is a simple health care intervention that can be effectively managed by a wide range of health workers using medication or a surgical procedure,” said the World Health Organization (WHO).
Each year, around 73 million induced abortions take place across the globe. It is estimated that one in four pregnancies end in abortion every year.
Meanwhile, WHO said six out of 10 unintended pregnancies worldwide end in induced abortion.
According to Amnesty International, abortion is considered a basic health care need for millions of women and girls who become pregnant.