Maria Ortega #20s #1970s #newyork #preroelegal #quackery

SUMMARY: Maria Ortega, age 23, died October 10, 1970 from a legal abortion performed by Armida Zepeta in New York, NY.

Twenty-three-year-old Maria Hernandez Ortega traveled from her home in Boston for a safe and legal abortion by Dr. Armida Zepeta in her New York office on October 10, 1970.

Zeptea estimated the pregnancy to be two months. She attempted an abortion, but was unable to extract the fetus. She concluded that Maria had not been pregnant after all, and sent her home.

At 10:00 that night, Maria died in her home. It turned out that she had actually been four months pregnant, not two months. Zepeta had pushed the fetus through the uterine wall into Maria's abdominal cavity.

Dr. Michael Baden, deputy chief medical examiner of New York, said that had Maria's abortion taken place in a properly equipped hospital, she might have been saved.

Maria, a citizen of Guatemala, had only lived in Boston for eight months.


The 1970 liberalization of abortion had made New York an abortion mecca until the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court ruling that abortionists could legally set up shop in any state of the union. In addition to Maria, these are the women I know of who had the dubious benefit of dying from the newfangled safe-and-legal kind of abortion in pre-Roe New York:


Sources:

As you can see from the graph below, abortion deaths were falling dramatically before legalization. This steep fall had been in place for decades. To argue that legalization lowered abortion mortality simply isn't supported by the data.

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