Ianthe Davis ended her bartending shift at 4 a.m. one recent morning in Dallas. An hour later, a friend picked her up and drove her three hours up Interstate 35 to Oklahoma City so she could get an abortion — a procedure that became almost impossible to obtain in her home state of Texas after a new law went into effect this month.

At a clinic in Oklahoma City, Davis was treated by another woman who was far from home, Dr. Rebecca Taub. The obstetrician and gynecologist travels once a month from her home in the East Bay to the small clinic, where she performs dozens of abortions over the course of two days.

Until then, a steady stream of women like Davis will continue coming to the Trust Women clinic, where they will be greeted by doctors like Taub….

The 35-year-old East Bay obstetrician and gynecologist, clad in blue surgical scrubs, performs roughly two dozen abortions a day when she is in town because it is difficult for the clinic to recruit local doctors, a common situation in states where the procedure is culturally shunned and women are required to scale many hurdles to obtain one.

To Taub, this is a form of activism. After seeing out-of-state patients and calls to the Oklahoma City clinic swell after the Texas law passed — two-thirds of the calls to the clinic inquiring about services are now from the neighboring state — she wants to do more.

On this day, the waiting room was full of women seeking services they couldn’t find close to home. The clinic’s halls and waiting rooms were full of affirming messages, including posters saying, “We Love You!” “Everyone Loves Someone Who Had an Abortion” and “Prove Them Wrong.”

“There’s an urgency to the work that people who work with the clinic follow because they’re activists and they believe in this work,” Taub said. Since the Texas law took effect, her work “has definitely taken on a new urgency….”

Trust Women clinic officials are expecting the flood of Texas women driving north to grow. They’re considering expanding their hours and adding staff, and are trying to recruit more doctors like Taub — even if they have to pay to fly them into town. On Nov. 1, a similar fetal heartbeat bill is scheduled to take effect in Oklahoma. Abortion rights organizations are attempting to block it.

Since the Texas ruling, Taub said some of her California colleagues have asked her about traveling to clinics like she does.

But she has more immediate concerns about her patients once they leave Oklahoma and drive home to Texas.

“There are so many unknowns in how this law can and will be enforced that I am concerned that pharmacists in Texas may not fill prescriptions that they know come from an abortion clinic, even though they are not the medications that are going to enact the abortion,” Taub said, referring to ibuprofen and anti-nausea medication she prescribes.

Her advice to patients before they head back to Texas: “I told them that they had to fill their prescriptions in Oklahoma.”

The above comes from a Sept. 23 (updated Nov. 24) story in the San Francisco Chronicle.