Abortion Reporting: Wyoming (2022)
Wyoming’s 2022 abortion report was published online by the Wyoming Department of Health in June 2023.
Statistics and Changes in Wyoming Abortions, 2021-2022
The report does not include information on Planned Parenthood’s Wyoming’s abortion market share, but Planned Parenthood operates no abortion centers in Wyoming.
Abortion Totals and Trends
2022 marked the third full year of reporting since Wyoming’s current abortion reporting law went into effect. In 2022, there were 200 abortions reported, all of which were induced chemically (Fig. 1). This was an increase of 94 percent in total abortions from the previous year. Because all abortions in 2021 were chemical, chemical abortions increased by the same percentage. The Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI) estimates that Wyoming’s abortion rate was 1.8 abortions per 1,000 women of childbearing age (Fig. 2).1 As of August 2023, 16 states had released abortion statistics for 2022, with 11 states reporting that abortions had increased.
State Report Summary
In 2022, there were 127 abortions (64 percent) performed on Wyoming residents and 72 abortions (36 percent) performed on women from out-of-state. One abortion was performed on a woman of unknown residence. Thirty-four percent were performed on women ages 24 and younger, 52 percent on women ages 25 to 24, and 15 percent on women ages 35 and older.
Fifty-two percent (104 abortions) were obtained by women with no previous live births, compared to 24 percent each (48 abortions) on women with one prior live birth and women with two or more previous births. Seventy-seven percent (153 abortions) were performed on women who had never had an abortion before. Twenty-eight abortions (14 percent) were performed on women with one previous abortion, and 19 abortions (ten percent) were on women with two or more previous abortions.
All but one of the abortions reported in Wyoming occurred at 10 weeks of gestation (eight weeks post-fertilization) or earlier, with 63 percent reported at six weeks or earlier and 37 percent performed between seven and 10 weeks. One abortion was performed at an unknown gestational age. No complications were reported.2 Wyoming law requires that abortions be performed only by licensed physicians.
In previous years, Wyoming’s annual report detailed the number of forms completed by physicians licensed to practice in Wyoming as well differentiating between the number of abortions performed at a brick-and-mortar establishment or via telehealth. However, the 2022 annual report does not contain this information.
Wyoming’s abortion law did not immediately change following the overturn of Roe v. Wade on June 24, 2022. The state had passed a trigger law, HB0092, earlier in 2022, but it was blocked hours before it was set to go into effect on July 27, 2022. This law would have prohibited abortion except in cases where a mother’s life or physical health was endangered and/or in cases of sexual assault and incest.
Early in 2023, the state legislature passed a new trigger law, HB0152, to prohibit abortion except in cases where a mother’s life or physical health was endangered, in cases of sexual assault and incest, and in cases of fetal anomalies. This law was signed by Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon on March 17, 2023 but was blocked on March 22, 2023.
In addition to the 2023 trigger law, the Wyoming state legislature passed SF0109 in the spring of 2023, and it was signed by Governor Gordon on March 17, 2023. The bill prohibits the administration of chemical abortion in Wyoming with exceptions for the life and physical health of the mother and sexual assault and incest. The law was slated to take effect on July 1, 2023, but it was blocked by the same judge who blocked the 2023 trigger law, who in her decision combined the two lawsuits regarding SF0109 and HB0152. A decision on the two laws is expected in April 2024.
After ranking near the bottom of the list in CLI’s 2016 paper evaluating abortion reporting across the country, Wyoming has made significant improvements to its reporting. As a result of a law enacted in 2018, the state now maintains stronger reporting requirements and releases its annual abortion statistics online. However, Wyoming could continue to improve its abortion reports by publishing more of the information it collects, including the demographics of women obtaining abortions in the state. Wyoming could also require that any abortion complications be reported by the healthcare providers who treat them, as some other states do. Lastly, the state could resume differentiating the number of abortions performed at brick-and-mortar centers and the number performed via telemedicine, as well as reporting the number of abortions performed by licensed physicians.
- Wyoming abortion rates were calculated by CLI using the following formula: (total number of abortions performed in Wyoming ÷ number of resident women ages 15-44 [based on most recent population estimates]) x 1,000. Rates may differ slightly from previous CLI articles due to revised population estimates. Population estimates were obtained from CDC WONDER. Estimates for 2020-2022 are Vintage 2021 postcensal estimates of the July 1 resident population; the CDC has not yet released 2022 population estimates. Estimates were produced by the U.S. Census Bureau and the National Center for Health Statistics.
- This data is collected in a non-systematic and non-verifiable way and cannot be used to calculate either an accurate abortion mortality rate or an accurate abortion complication rate for the state.