The recently published study in JAMA Psychiatry took a look at data recorded over 43 years. It concluded state-level pro-life restrictions negatively impact suicide rates among women ages 20 to 34.
Dr. Michael New of the Charlotte Lozier Institute tells AFN he reviewed the study and found some flaws, beginning with its dates going back to the 1970s to 2016. Abortion was legal in all 50 states at the time.
“And maybe, with a couple of short-term exceptions, every state had an abortion facility,” he says. “So there weren't really big disparities in terms of access to abortion.”
The study looked at the impact of abortion clinic regulations, which sometimes closed a facility after a health inspection, but there was not a clear and consistent impact on availability of abortion.
Flipping the statistics around, Dr. New says the clearest takeaway is that surveys show going through with an abortion actually increases the chance of suicide.
“We have data from Finland,” he tells AFN, “which shows that women who obtain abortions are actually three more times likely to commit suicide than the general population.”
A study dating back to 2012 suggested that parental involvement lowers the suicide rate among troubled teen girls.
So his conclusion is that there is plenty of research that suggests pro-life laws reduce the risk of suicide and improve public health.