Following the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe vs. Wade on June 24, 2022, President and Chief Executive Officer of NYC Health + Hospitals, Mitchell Katz, MD, stated, “Here in New York City, Health + Hospitals will continue to provide safe, legal, accessible abortion services to all who make this deeply personal choice.”

In October 2023, the NYC Health + Hospitals system launched a new approach to abortion care through telehealth visits. During a press conference, New York City (NYC) Mayor Eric Adams highlighted the significance of this initiative, emphasizing that the NYC Health Department is pioneering by allowing individuals seeking abortion care to consult licensed professionals via video or phone, rather than requiring in-person visits. Mayor Adams emphasized, “Tough decisions are made in the comfort of your environment and home, and if you are clinically eligible, that provider will be able to prescribe abortion medication that will be delivered to your New York City address within days.” This service has been available seven days a week since.

On Friday, February 2, 2024, NYC Health + Hospitals provided an update on its telehealth abortion care, facilitated through the health system’s Virtual ExpressCare service.

City officials present at the press conference included José Bayona, Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Ethnic and Community Media; Erfan Karim, MPH, Executive Director of NYC Health + Hospitals Virtual ExpressCare; and Marisa Nadas, MD, MPH, NYC Health + Hospitals Reproductive Health Clinical Lead and Virtual ExpressCare Associate Medical Director.

Since the commencement of NYC Health + Hospitals’ Virtual ExpressCare service, 870 virtual visits have been completed, over 230 abortion kits have been mailed, and 360 patients have been referred for in-person care. Officials highlighted that the average wait time for virtual visits is less than 5 minutes and that over 73% of the patients identified as people of color.

They reiterated that the service allows patients in NYC seeking abortion care to connect with a New York State-licensed health care professional via video or phone for assessment, counseling, and access to medication for those who are eligible.

City officials restated that NYC Health + Hospitals provides easy and convenient care, and the removal of in-person barriers allows for more access.

The telehealth abortion service is meant for NYC residents who confirm their residency for both the assessment and delivery of the medication. The medication will only be mailed to NYC addresses and is eligible for patients up to 10 weeks into their pregnancy.

When asked about flaws in residency verification, such as individuals from out of state using family addresses, the panel emphasized that there are issues but their ultimate goal is to provide safe and quality care to patients seeking reliable care.

They continued speaking about how their telehealth initiative builds upon NYC Health + Hospitals’ extensive range of facility-based obstetric and gynecologic services, ensuring comprehensive care for patients. Moreover, the Virtual ExpressCare service offers immediate and confidential care for various physical and behavioral health concerns.

They concluded by stating their mission to empower New Yorkers to lead healthier lives and to receive their services regardless of their financial situation. The telehealth abortion care will be covered like any service; depending on those with insurance, they may need to pay a copay, and those who cannot afford it, the Virtual ExpressCare will provide assistance by enrolling in NYC Care, Medicaid, or Medicare depending on income and family size.

Access to telehealth services remains available seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. and is available in over 200 languages. To access NYC Health + Hospitals Virtual ExpressCare service, visit or call 718-360-8981.

Those seeking other abortion services, ranging from medication to procedural abortion services, can seek in-person appointments at hospital-based clinics and receive obstetric and gynecologic assistance by calling 844-692-4692.

Gonzalo Duran
As a seasoned professional in both the military and civic realms, Gonzalo Duran brings a wealth of experience to his role as the Chief Executive Officer of Devil Dog USA Incorporated. A former United States Marine Sergeant, he not only leads a non-profit dedicated to supporting Veterans’ reintegration but also holds key positions in Bronx County’s political landscape, including Vice Chairman of the Bronx County Conservative Party and (C) District Leader for the 79th Assembly District. With over a decade as a CEO, Gonzalo is a multifaceted contributor to his community, excelling as an access producer, talk show host, columnist, chaplain, and advocate.