Nearly 1 in 1,000 pregnant women are diagnosed with cancer each year. What’s more, some cancers must be treated immediately to save the mother, and some treatments may be harmful to the developing fetus. What to do? It’s a harrowing decision made all the more complicated by the Supreme Court ruling that overturned Roe v. Wade and allows states and Congress to ban abortions. Indeed, oncologists could possibly risk prison time if treating their cancer patients terminates a pregnancy. Without taking a position on the court’s ruling, the American Cancer Society and the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network urge states to ensure that people with cancer have access to immediate care, that they have the right to preserve fertility before starting treatment and that cancer screenings and early diagnoses remain accessible and affordable. “Every patient,” the nonprofits write, “should be able to increase their likelihood to survive cancer by having the option to start cancer therapy immediately, regardless of pregnancy status.”
Abortion Access Affects Cancer Patients
Top cancer organizations urge states to ensure that people with cancer have access to care.