Newsom signs law allowing Arizona doctors to perform abortions

While the bill does not include funding to help Arizona women travel to California to receive abortions, private donors are actively building support.

A new law signed by California Gov. Gavin Newsom allows Arizona doctors to come to California to perform abortions for their patients. 

This law is a reaction to a recent Arizona Supreme Court decision to reinstate a law that bans nearly all abortions in Arizona. 


The big picture: The move by California aims to give Arizonans an option to receive legal abortions from their doctor over the next several months while the law is being challenged in Arizona.

  • California’s new law, effective immediately, allows licensed doctors in Arizona to come to California and perform abortions for their patients through the end of November.
  • The earliest the Arizona abortion ban could take effect is in the fall. The state Supreme Court granted a stay on enforcement until September 26, and it could be further delayed due to a 45-day stay granted in a separate but related case.
  • Arizona law currently allows abortions up to 15 weeks of pregnancy.

Go deeper: Licensed Arizona doctors who want to perform abortions in California would have to fill out an application, but if they meet certain requirements, California regulators are directed to approve their application within five business days.

  • California has passed dozens of laws to protect abortion access and has set aside $20 million in taxpayer money to help pay for patients in other states to travel to California for abortions.
  • The law signed by Gov. Newsom does not include new money to help Arizona patients travel to California for abortions, but private donors are raising money through the advocacy group Red Wine and Blue to support Arizona patients’ travel to California.
  • The law requires Arizona doctors to inform California regulators about their intentions to perform abortions in the state, but it prohibits California regulators from publishing any additional information about these doctors on their website.
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