Symone Magsombol Yu: One Patient At A Time

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Medical professionals in women’s health care like Symone Magsombol Yu are as devastated by the demise of Roe v Wade as their clients but determined to serve them, one patient at a time.

I chose a career in nursing to provide dignified and humanized care. As a former postpartum RN and current adolescent nurse practitioner, I’ve cared for many throughout the reproductive health spectrum. And as someone who could become pregnant myself, all these experiences have heightened my feelings of disbelief and heartbreak with the overturning of Roe v. Wade.

Contraception and pregnancy options counseling are integral to my patients' care. There are times I’m the first to disclose a positive pregnancy result, and I never take that privilege lightly. Whatever my patients decide - to continue or end their pregnancy - I support them. Although I’m a clinician with medical expertise, I trust my patients' expertise for their own life, own circumstances, and to know their body best. Everyone deserves the fundamental right to informed decisions about their health, their bodies, and their privacy. Abortion is health care and a human right.

Nearly half of all U.S. pregnancies are unplanned. Having an abortion - whether therapeutic or spontaneous miscarriage - is common. About 1 in 4 people able to become pregnant have had at least one abortion by the age of 45. Restricting abortion care is harmful and heavily burdens the most vulnerable - adolescents, people of color, uninsured, undocumented and the poor.

I’m grateful to be a clinician in the Bay Area, and to practice in 1 out of 20 states with protected access and 20% of all U.S. abortion clinics. However, the logistics are imperfect, access is unequal, and there’s already an influx of patients crossing state borders to receive care here.

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Through my waves of hopelessness, I’m choosing to believe that good is possible - with advocating for reproductive justice beyond clinic walls and supporting health policies backed with clinical evidence. It’s exhausting, but my commitment to my profession and my patients is renewed. Although I can’t change the Supreme Court decision, I’ll continue providing compassionate needed care, one patient at a time.

With a Perspective, I’m Symone Magsombol Yu.

Symone Magsombol Yu is a Nurse Practitioner in San Mateo County. She is a Bay Area native and lives in San Francisco.