Can I get a discount at my clinic?
Some clinics are able to give you a discount if you don’t have the money to pay for your abortion. The discount is based on your income: it’s available for women who make about $11,200 a year or less (that’s a little under $1,000 a month before taxes). If other people also depend on your income, you can make a little bit more and still be eligible (for instance, about $1,250 a month for a family of two).
The whole process can be a little confusing, though, so read carefully.
1. What state do you live in?
If you live in one of the following states (where the state Medicaid programs cover abortion), there is no discount available.
But if you live in one of these states and you are enrolled in Medicaid (or if you are eligible to sign up), then you might be able to get your abortion for free. Read about the process here.
If you live in the District of Columbia or in one of the states not listed above, keep reading.
2. Are you going to a Planned Parenthood clinic?
After you make your appointment, tell the clinic that you’ll need help paying for your abortion. Ask them about the Justice Fund, and they’ll take it from there. You must have already made your appointment before you can get the discount.
3. Can you find your clinic on this website?
You might be able to get funding, but it will be a little trickier. If your clinic:
- Is listed on that website
- Is not a Planned Parenthood
AND if you don’t live in any of those states that were listed above, you might be able to get some extra help from the National Abortion Federation.
What you’ll do is call this hotline: 1-800-772-9100.
Once you get through, a hotline worker will ask you questions about your income in order to figure out if you are eligible for the discount (that’s the income information we listed above). If you qualify for help, then they’ll make sure that the discount applies when you show up for your appointment. You must have already made your appointment before you can get the discount. If you call the hotline before you make your appointment, you’ll be instructed to call back after you make an appointment. Save yourself some time and make your appointment first.
Nervous about making an appointment? It’s fine to go ahead and make an appointment for your abortion even if you’re not sure how you’ll pay for it. You can always reschedule your appointment later – clinics don’t charge you for rescheduling.
Having a hard time getting through? We feel you. Sadly, there are a lot of women around the country who are in exactly your situation, and they are also trying to get through on the same 1-800 number. It may feel frustrating, but it’s worth being patient and determined.
Here are some tips:
- Call early and call late.
The hotline is open from 7am-11pm Eastern Time (that’s 4am-8pm on the West Coast), Mondays through Fridays, and 9am-5pm Eastern Time on weekends. If you call in the early morning or later at night, you have a better chance of getting through.
- Call non-stop.
The recording on the hotline may tell you to call back later. Instead, try hanging up and immediately pressing redial. If you can keep this up for an hour, you have a good chance of getting through.
- Ask for help.
Have a friend or family member who knows about your situation? Ask them to call, too. You can even get together with some friends and coordinate calling on your cell phones.
- Don’t give up.
It may seem like you are never going to get through, and that there is no one there to answer your call. It may feel almost hopeless, especially if you have been trying the hotline for days. But this organization helps thousands of women just like you, and when the phone line is tied up, it’s because other women are getting the help they need. So if you just keep up your calling, and are persistent, you will be one of those women.