Patients expecting an appointment at Whole Woman's Health Friday were turned away at three of the company’s five Texas locations.
"We had to cancel all the patients in those three facilities and then try to accommodate them with pretty reduced capacity in the 2 facilities we still have open," Amy Hagstrom Miller, president and CEO of Whole Women’s Health, said.
Hagstrom Miller says one Austin location, along with one in Beaumont will remain open for now because the facilities have doctors with admitting privileges at nearby hospitals.
But she says new financial strain could force further closures.
"The challenges in the interim, I may not be able to keep facilities open in that time frame,” she said. “If we can't see patients, we don't have the ability to keep the doors open."
A ruling by a federal appeals court late Thursday means a third of Texas' abortion clinics can no longer perform the procedure—a big win for people like Joe Pojman with Texas Alliance for Life.
He says this allows for increased safety standards at abortion facilities and plans to make sure the law is enforced.
"If there's incompliance, I think it's our duty to let the state know the law is being flaunted because those procedures are being done in an unsafe manner," Pojman said.
But Hagstrom Miller says there's no question they'll comply. It's now about figuring out how to get women the care they're seeking.
"We're doing research right now about hiring buses where we could have a bus that could bring women from McAllen to San Antonio or Austin, or bring women from Ft. Worth to San Antonio or Austin, Beaumont," she said.
As for the clinics that don't meet the new standards, Hagstrom Miller is hoping some doctors with existing admitting privileges nearby might see their need and come knocking.
According to a Planned Parenthood representative, four of their centers also stopped providing abortion services Friday.
The law passed the legislature this summer. It also bans abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and adds requirements for administering abortion inducing drugs.
Then in October of next year, all doctors performing abortions will have to do so in surgical facilities.