Texas Abortion Providers Say All But 5 Clinics Could Close

HOUSTON (July 13, 2013)--Texas abortion providers fear that the stringent restrictions Legislature passed could force all but five of the state's clinics to close, leaving only a handful of facilities across the entire state.

The legislation passed early Saturday allows abortions only in surgical centers, dictates when abortion pills are taken, bans abortions after 20 weeks unless the woman's life is in imminent danger, and requires abortion providers to have admitting privileges at a hospital.

Abortion opponents say the new rules guarantee better health care, but abortion-rights advocates argue the high cost of converting clinics into surgical centers will force more than 35 facilities to close, leaving only a few in large cities.

They say they also fear the closures could create a backlog that will cause women to miss the 20-week deadline.

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