Doctors aim to take the best care of their patients. For Dr. Pratima Gupta sometimes that means providing care during a pregnancy, and sometimes it means performing an abortion.
It’s a rare combination to have an OBGYN (Obstetrics and Gynaecology) who also performs abortions, but for Dr. Gupta it’s all about her female patients’ health.
Sometimes that means a pregnancy. And sometimes that means an abortion.
In the podcast The Longest Shortest Time, Dr. Gupta told host Hillary Frank many people just label her an abortion provider, but she’s so much more than that. Her father was an OBGYN and she often accompanied him to hospital, hanging out with the nurses until the baby was delivered.
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She missed her dad during that time and was convinced she would not become a doctor for that very reason, but medicine kept calling her, particularly the prospect of working with women.
But during her residency she took a course called Family Planning which taught her how to provide abortions.
Dr. Gupta, who has a four-year-old son and is pregnant with her second child, felt drawn to both delivering babies and doing abortions. Instead of being sent down the road to an abortion clinic, she wanted to be there for women seeking abortions, to give them the best possible care, both physically and mentally.
“My personal goal around that was to normalise abortion care and that is how my day is, is that patient number one could be a pap smear, patient number two two could want birth control, patient number three could be an abortion and patient number four could have a menopause issues.”
Dr. Gupta convinced a OBGYN practice to hire her, so women could receive all the care they needed from one location whether it be pregnancy care or abortions. It took some convincing but so far has worked well for the practice.
“It’s just part of my day existing through the normal stream because I look at it as part of normal women’s health care.”
In fact, Dr. Gupta feels so strongly about abortion care she has entered politics as a candidate for San Francisco’s Democratic County Central Committee.