Frequently Asked Questions
Quick answers from midwives and doctors:
Is the pregnancy test I bought accurate?
Yes, store-bought or over-the-counter pregnancy test kits are considered accurate by medical professionals. You do not need to go to a center or clinic for confirmation. If you have a missed period and the test is positive, you can assume that you are pregnant.
A pregnancy test can not tell you how far along your pregnancy is. When considering options for next steps, knowing how many weeks pregnant you are can be important. You can use this pregnancy calculator to date your pregnancy. If you do not know the day (or approximate day) of your last period, you can go to your local healthcare practitioner for an ultrasound, as well as for any other testing and referral needs. You are welcome to call the 24/7 confidential call line to talk about pregnancy feelings, options, and next steps with a midwife.
Who answers the call line?
A volunteer Wisconsin midwife answers your call. Midwives are licensed medical professionals and are qualified to answer questions and make referrals regarding all things pregnancy. They can support you with safe and accurate information and help connect you to state and local resources.
The POWERS call line and website have no affiliation with commercial, political, or religious groups.
What happens when I call?
A midwife will answer the line with their first name and the words: "How can I support you?" You do not have to give your real name, and your phone number and any message you leave will be deleted on the day of the call, unless you request further contact. Midwives are required by law to practice strict confidentiality.
If call-line midwives are busy when you call, we invite you to try again a few minutes later or leave a message with call-back instructions that include anything we should know to protect your confidentiality (best time of day to call, if it is ok to leave a message, etc.).
Can anyone else find out that I am calling you / called you? How can I delete this website from my browsing history?
When you call, you do not have to give your name. We delete your phone number and any voice messages on the day of the call, unless you request further contact. Remember, our phone number will be stored in your cell phone, so it must be deleted from your call history. For an iPhone, follow these instructions; for an Android, follow these instructions. To delete this website from your web browser history, follow these instructions. If you share a call plan with your family or another person, our number may be visible in an account history.
I just found out my partner is pregnant. Can partners of pregnant people call too?
Yes. Partners, family, and support people are welcome to call the line. Please know we have a strict policy of not sharing any information regarding your, or another person's, call. We work to protect the autonomy and decision-making of the pregnant person.
What are my options for adoption?
Planning an adoption does not erase your experience of pregnancy, labor, and birth. You have a right to informed-choice, person-centering healthcare and an opportunity for empowered pregnancy and birth. You can access the midwife, physician, and birth setting options available in Wisconsin on our Pregnancy Continuation page and a variety of pregnancy and birth resources on our Life Resources page.
Our Adoption Resources lists a variety of nonprofit adoption organizations that center the pregnant person and birth parent. Many offer counseling for all options, as well as opportunities for ongoing education, support, and networking. You have a right to a positive experience throughout the adoption process and beyond.
I am not a U.S. Citizen. Can I see a regular healthcare practitioner for my pregnancy?
Citizenship or immigration status should not affect your ability to access healthcare. If you are undocumented, you do not need to disclose this to staff. If you need an interpreter, let the clinic or your practitioner know, and they should provide translation services at no cost. Healthcare is private, and practitioners and staff cannot tell anyone (including immigration enforcement) that you are in their care. See Planned Parenthood's Know Your Rights Guide for more information. See the Pregnancy Continuation page to learn about types of pregnancy practitioners in Wisconsin.
How can I have a water birth?
If you choose to work with a midwife in Wisconsin, you may be able to plan a water birth. Some hospitals and most independent birth center and home settings support the use of aqua-therapy during labor and birth. See the Pregnancy Continuation page to learn how to find midwives in your area. Ask them about their water birth guidelines.
How do I get an abortion where I live?
There are four healthcare clinics where you can access abortion in Wisconsin (see below). A fifth option is traveling to a more abortion-accessible state such as Minnesota or Illinois. Some people obtain pills on their own through online or other sources.
The first step is to call the clinic of your choice and make an appointment. There are many resources in Wisconsin committed to assisting you, including abortion funds and abortion doulas. For detailed information, go to our Pregnancy Release and Abortion Resources pages, or call us for more information.
Healthcare clinics where you can access abortion in Wisconsin:
Is emergency contraception the same thing as abortion pills?
No,they are not the same. Emergency contraceptive pills work to prevent a pregnancy, while abortion pills end a pregnancy. Over-the-counter emergency contraceptive pills are effective up to 72 hours after after sex that could lead to pregnancy. It is not safe or effective to use emergency contraception pills to end a pregnancy.
I am not a U.S. citizen. Can I get an abortion?
Citizenship or immigration status should not affect your ability to access abortion. If you are undocumented, you do not need to disclose this to staff. All people entering the clinic need to provide a photo ID. A passport or identification card from your country of origin will work. If you need an interpreter, let the clinic know and they will provide one at no cost. Abortion care, like all healthcare, is private, and clinic staff do not tell anyone, not even immigration enforcement, if you are at the clinic or were treated there. See Planned Parenthood's Know Your Rights Guide for more information.
How much does an abortion cost?
In Wisconsin, two separate visits are required for all abortions, and you will be asked to pay for each visit separately. The first visit costs $100 or $125, depending on the clinic you go to. The second visit costs $475 or $550 for a pill abortion and $550 or $560 for an in-clinic abortion through 13 weeks of pregnancy. The cost of abortion increases after 13 weeks, according to how far along your pregnancy is. Fees include options for pain medication.
How can I pay for my abortion?
If you cannot afford the full cost of an abortion, let the clinic staff know when you call to make your appointment. They are committed to working with you to find additional funding resources.
Some private insurance companies cover all or part of the cost for an abortion. Check with your insurance company before your first appointment. Wisconsin Medicaid (called BadgerCare) does not pay for abortion. If your pregnancy is a result of rape or incest AND it has been reported to police, BadgerCare may pay for your abortion. The clinic can help determine your insurance coverage.
Does the father of the baby / my boyfriend / my partner / the person I am married to have to know about an abortion?
Unless you are under 18, you do not have to tell anyone about your abortion — not the person you are pregnant with or the person you are married to. Clinic practitioners will not share your information with anyone, unless you give them written permission to do so. Be advised that if you are able to bill your insurance for abortion care, and you share an insurance policy with another person (for example, your parent or spouse), a bill or explanation of benefits may be sent to the insurance policy-holder or to your home.
I am under 18. Do I need permission from anyone to have an abortion?
Wisconsin has specific laws for people under the age of 18 (minors) who are seeking an abortion. The law requires that prior to an abortion, an adult relative must give consent. The adult relative can be a family member (parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, sibling), guardian, legal custodian, or foster parent who is at least 25 years old. The adult relative must come with you to the clinic for two scheduled appointments.
Exceptions to this rule are:
if a court has ordered that you are legally emancipated — let the clinic know this when you are making your appointment and bring a copy of the court order to your appointments;
if you have given birth previously, in which case you are considered “emancipated” and allowed to consent for an abortion on your own — let the clinic know this when you are making your appointment and bring a copy of your child’s birth certificate to your appointments;
if you obtain a judicial bypass. This is a free and confidential ruling from a court that allows you to obtain an abortion without involving an adult. To obtain a judicial bypass, contact your county public defender’s office. If they do not help you, contact any Planned Parenthood and ask them to advocate for you. The judicial bypass process can take a few days - bring all documents with you to your first appointment.
I took abortion pills and would like to talk with someone about what's happening.
If you were given pills at Affiliated Medical Services or Planned Parenthood, please follow up with them directly at the 24-hour number they gave you. If you took abortion pills that you obtained on your own, please consult one of the excellent self-managed abortion resources on our Abortion Resources page or call our confidential call line.
I think I might be having a miscarriage. Will someone think I caused it?
Many people do not know that 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage. Serious early problems in the development of an embryo or fetus are the most common reasons. If you have a miscarriage, it was not caused by something you did, did not do, or thought. Sometimes, our bodies wisely release pregnancies that are not healthy.
We understand that extreme abortion laws make some pregnant people who are having a miscarriage worry about accusation and being reported to police. During any part of a miscarriage or suspected miscarriage, you are welcome to call our 24-hour call line with questions or for doula support. If you are concerned for your legal safety, visit the
Information about the miscarriage process and healthcare options can be found on our Pregnancy Release page. Our Life Resources page may also be of interest.