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A Woman's Right to Know

Medical and Social Assistance

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You must get some information from your doctor or the doctor's assistant before the abortion can be done. Here are the things you must be told:

  • You may be able to get medical-assistance benefits to help with prenatal care, childbirth, and neonatal care.
  • The man who got you pregnant must help support your child if you decide to stay pregnant and keep the baby. The law says he must help even if he offered to pay for an abortion.
  • The Law allows adoptive parents to pay costs of prenatal care, childbirth, and neonatal care.
  • Public and Private agencies and services are available to assist you during your pregnancy and after the birth of your child if you choose not to have an abortion, whether you choose to keep the child or place the child for adoption.
  • It is unlawful for any person to coerce you to undergo an abortion.
  • You are free to withhold or withdraw your consent to the abortion at any time without affecting your right to future care or treatment and without the loss of any state or federally funded benefits to which you might otherwise be entitled.
  • The Department of Health Services maintains this website that describes the unborn child and lists the agencies that offer alternatives to abortion.
  • You have the right to review this website and ask your doctor to provide you free of charge a copy of the materials on the website if requested.

You should know that, under Arizona's Safe Haven law, a parent or agent of a parent may anonymously give up an unharmed infant who is 72 hours old or younger to a Safe Haven provider without any questions asked. Parents can feel safe and confident that they won't be charged with child abuse if they are to give up their newborn baby in this manner.

What exactly is a Safe Haven provider? Arizona Revised Statute §13-3623.01 says that Safe Haven providers include firefighters who are on duty, emergency medical technicians on duty, staff members at a health care institution, and staff members or volunteers at selected private child welfare agencies, selected adoption agencies, and churches.

A parent essentially gives up their custody of the child when they hand over the baby to a Safe Haven provider. This is of course true if the parent does not express an intent to return to the newborn infant, and if the Save Haven provider reasonably believes that the child is indeed a newborn infant.

The whole purpose of Arizona's Safe Haven law is to protect newborn babies from abandonment and to protect parents who no longer want custody of their newborn baby. The law provides parents with options if they don't want their baby. Parents or agents can remain anonymous and they don't have to answer any questions. Other states also have safe haven laws that are similar to that of Arizona's law. More information about the state's Safe Haven law can be found through the Department of Economic Security.

Access to Prenatal Care and Nursery and Neonatal Care

AHCCCS offers health insurance for pregnant women and nursery and neonatal care upon birth of the child. For people who qualify, there are no monthly premiums.

Who Can Receive Services

The applicant may qualify for this program if the applicant:

  • Is an Arizona resident
  • Is an Untied States citizen or a qualified immigrant (If the woman is not a U.S. citizen or qualified immigrant, she may still be eligible for emergency services.)
  • Has a Social Security number or applies for one
    • To apply for a Social Security number, visit the U.S. Social Security Administration.
    • Make a copy of the form submitted as confirmation of applying for a Social Security Number
  • Applies for potential income that may be available, such as unemployment, pensions, and Social Security
  • Is under the income limit
    • A portion of the pregnant woman's income and a portion of the parents' or spouse's income is counted (see example below)

Baby Arizona is a program to help pregnant women begin the important prenatal care they need while waiting to see if they are eligible for AHCCCS Health Insurance. Staff will put the woman in touch with a doctor in her area that will help her apply for AHCCCS Health Insurance.

Baby Arizona is a simple, faster way for pregnant women to start getting health care before the application process for AHCCCS health insurance is completed. Visit the Baby Arizona website for more information.

Call 1-800-833-4642 with questions about Baby Arizona.

Additional Information

801 E. Jefferson Street, MD 4100
Phoenix, AZ 85034
Ph: 602-417-4000
FAX: 602-252-6536
Toll Free: 1-800-654-8713