Illinois abortion clinics expecting surge in Wisconsin patients

NOW: Illinois abortion clinics expecting surge in Wisconsin patients

ILLINOIS (CBS 58) -- With the overturn of Roe v. Wade and the reinstatement of an abortion law in Wisconsin, clinics in neighboring states, like the Planned Parenthood in Waukegan, Illinois, are expecting a surge of patients from Wisconsin.

"We have opened this location, and another location closer to the Indiana border, kind of anticipating this in the event that it would happen," said Ezra Figueroa, assistant health care manager at Planned Parenthood in Waukegan.

Planned Parenthood of Illinois is expecting 20,000 to 30,000 new out-of-state patients, many of them traveling from Wisconsin.

"Planned Parenthood of Illinois has actually been collaborating with Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin to make sure that our patients from Wisconsin can still receive the essential care they need," said Figueroa.

Dr. Kathy King of Planned Parenthood Wisconsin said the day the news broke, they had to turn down service to almost 70 patients who were previously scheduled. The priority now is to reschedule those patients into a safe place.

"Suddenly, in an instant, we shifted to do everything we could to help people access care across state lines. But no, not everyone will have the privilege to access that care," said Dr. Kathy King.

Figueroa said his team's priority is to offer access to out-of-state patients, with plans of adding more staff and hours, being one of the 17 clinics in Illinois doing so.

"As frustrating and heartbreaking as this is, we are still just as dedicated to serving our patients every single day," said Figueroa.

Planned Parenthood Waukegan said Wisconsin patients can make appointments through their website.

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