Listen to the Call:
514 LAKE ST.
SITKA, AK 99835-7405
TAPE – 752
(Dialing, phone ringing 3x)
CLINIC: Planned Parenthood. Chris Ann (sp).
CALLER: Hi. Yeah. I was calling to see if you guys do abortions there.
CLINIC: No, we don’t unfortunately. There is not a provider in town that does those. And you either have to go to Anchorage or Seattle.
CLINIC: I can give you information on that if you want.
CALLER: Okay. Do you have the number for the one in Anchorage?
CLINIC: Yes, I do. Hang on just a second. Where are you calling from?
CLINIC: Douglas. Okay. There is a provider in Juneau who we have been talking with to see if we can get that person to provide an abortion service here, because it would be really nice not to have to travel so darn far.
CALLER: Do you have their number too?
CLINIC: Well, I can’t give that out yet because it’s not a practice yet. I mean, they’re not doing them. And we’re trying to encourage them to provide that service. So Anchorage– the Alaska Women’s Health Clinic is in Anchorage. And their number is 563-7228. And we refer people up there. People really like them. They’re very professional and all of that. If you can time your travel right, it’s a two-day trip. You can take an early jet up, have your appointment the first day, and then the second day the procedure’s done, and then you can come home that night. So it’s a pretty quick thing.
Do you know how far along you are about?
CALLER: Well, no. I just haven’t had my period since January 3rd.
CLINIC: Have you taken a pregnancy test?
CLINIC: You haven’t? Okay. You’re calling from Douglas?
CLINIC: Yeah, right outside Juneau. You can probably walk in to the Juneau Health Center and get a pregnancy test and confirm whether or not you are pregnant. And then they can kind of give you an approximate date as to how far along you are. If you haven’t had your period since June 3rd, you could certainly be — it depends on —
CALLER: January 3rd.
CLINIC: Sorry. January 3rd. You know, you may not be. Do you feel pregnant? Have you been pregnant before?
CALLER: No. Well, the thing is, I’m going to be 14 later on this month, and my friend said that you guys would have to tell my parents. But my boyfriend’s 22. Is that old enough to take care of it, and you wouldn’t have to tell anybody?
CLINIC: You’re going to be 14?
CLINIC: And he’s 22. Actually, he’s way out of bounds.
CALLER: What do you mean?
CLINIC: Well, I mean in terms of consent and so forth. I mean, legally he’s taking advantage of a minor.
CALLER: What do you mean? I mean, we’re in love. We’re going to get married. He said he was going to take care of me forever.
CLINIC: Okay. I’m glad he said that. I hope he follows through with that. Is he willing to help you financially with this?
CALLER: Yeah. He said he was going to pay for everything.
CLINIC: Okay. You don’t have to tell — we don’t tell parents, at least at Planned Parenthood. So we could give the information. But before you go to Anchorage, you’re going to want to make sure that you are in fact pregnant.
CALLER: So could I come in there for a pregnancy test?
CLINIC: You could come to Sitka if you wanted to. But you can buy a pregnancy test even in the grocery store —
CALLER: Oh, okay.
CLINIC: — if you don’t want to go to the public health center.
CALLER: Are those usually right though?
CLINIC: Uh-huh, yeah. They’re quite accurate. They’re not 100 percent, but they’re 99.9 percent accurate or pretty close up there. And they’re very easy to do. You pee in a little — if you’re pregnant, it measures a certain hormone in your urine. And you have to be pregnant for at least two weeks for your body to start sloughing off that hormone for it to pick it up. And if you haven’t had a period in two months, and if you think you’re pregnant, it would certainly be a wise idea to do it.
If you get a positive read — and pretty much all these tests are the same. There are a bunch of different brands, and it doesn’t matter which one you get. You pee on this stick, and if you’re pregnant — if it’s a positive reading — you’ll get a double pink line. It will give you examples of that.
CALLER: Oh, okay.
CLINIC: So it’s very easy to do. And you can do that in the privacy of your home if you’re concerned about confidentiality kinds of things.
CALLER: Well, would you have to tell anybody about my boyfriend?
CLINIC: No. This is all between you and us and you and whomever.
CALLER: So if it ended up that I wasn’t pregnant, do you guys do birth control there?
CLINIC: We do here in Sitka, yeah.
CLINIC: Yeah, you bet. Can you hang on just a second?
CLINIC: Yeah. I would encourage you to go to the Juneau Public Health Center. There is a law in Alaska — and it doesn’t matter that — given your age, you’re entitled to the confidentiality, and they don’t have to tell your parents. They’re not going to bill insurance or anything like that. It’s family planning and birth control. I would encourage you to go there and get a pregnancy test so you get a good read, and you can get some good discussion going. And they will certainly provide you with birth control of your choice.
CALLER: And nobody would have to know that I was on birth control?
CLINIC: Nobody would have to know that you’re on birth control unless you tell them. It’s a law.
CALLER: And you’re sure that nobody has to know about my boyfriend?
CLINIC: I’m sure no one has to know about your boyfriend. That’s your choice.
CALLER: Okay. I just have so many questions.
CLINIC: No, go ahead. Ask away.
CALLER: Well, I don’t of any others to ask right not. But if I thought of anything, could I call and talk to you? What was your name?
CLINIC: My name is Chris Anne, and you can certainly call.
CALLER: All right.
CLINIC: Yeah, you bet. I’d be happy to talk with you as much as you want.
CALLER: All right. Thanks.
CLINIC: You bet. Bye bye.