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Deception is central to crisis pregnancy centers’ strategies. Critics have illustrated the many forms this deception takes: disguising their political and religious motivations; implying they offer abortions when they do not; opening near abortion clinics with the intention of confusing and thus hijacking those en route to clinics; and peddling false information regarding abortion. Scholars found, for example, that 80% of crisis pregnancy center websites listed in state resource directories related to pregnancy include false or misleading medical information, including that abortion leads to breast cancer, infertility, and mental health issues, among other claims repeatedly proven false. Such inaccurate information is given credence by the aesthetics CPCs, which suggest they are medical clinics when they are not. For instance, some CPC volunteers wear white lab coats and CPCs also increasingly offer free ultrasounds, although they do not make clear to clients that these ultrasounds are meant to be “non-diagnostic,” and therefore are not medical in nature. Because CPCs do not provide medical care, they are not subject to the same regulations as medical clinics, including patient privacy laws, such as HIPAA. This means that whatever personal information you give to CPCs (in intake forms, in internet chat boxes, or in conversations) is not private or protected. CPCs disproportionately impact people of color, low-income people, and people in rural areas—those who already face greater barriers to healthcare.

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