When someone is pregnant or thinks they might be, they need access to accurate information and quality medical care about all of their options — but fake clinics have popped up all over the country, including in West Virginia, that deceive and mislead women and other people who can get pregnant, to try to keep them from having abortions.
In fact, there are over 4,000 fake pregnancy clinics in the U.S., and at least 16 in West Virginia (compared to the one and only clinic where people can access full-service reproductive health care, including abortion care: the Women’s Health Center of West Virginia), and most do their best to deceive women and other people who can get pregnant into believing that they provide medical services they simply don’t offer.
Why are fake clinics dangerous?
- Fake clinics frequently deceptively advertise by posing as comprehensive reproductive health clinics.
- Fake clinics do not provide honest and accurate medical information, and sometimes give people inaccurate medical information in order to delay their access to medical care.
- Fake clinics claim to offer unbiased counseling and all pregnancy options, but instead shame, mislead and pressure people not to have abortions.
- Most fake clinics are unregulated and unlicensed.
- Fake clinics target the most vulnerable populations – young people, low-income people, and people of color – with their advertising and by locating in their communities; learn more here on pages 6 and 16 and here.
- Fake clinics’ deceptive tactics can be harmful because they can prevent pregnant people from making informed health care decisions, cause them to delay seeking actual care, and/or may fail to diagnose medical conditions or problems with the fetus.
What you can do:
- Sign our pledge! Tell legislators that you oppose fake clinics and their deceptive tactics and believe in honesty and transparency in not only licensed health care clinics, but resource centers as well.
- Know who to watch for – read the list of fake clinics in and around WV or the national list of fake clinics.
- Find out more about fake clinics at National Women’s Law Center.
- Join the national movement to #ExposeFakeClinics here.
This project is supported by the National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH). Learn more about our partnership here.