Abortion and its legality in

Types of Abortion Surgical Home pregnancy tests available at a drug store can indicate pregnancy early after conception.

Abortion and its legality in

Cohen First published online: November 20, Around the world, according to a new Guttmacher Institute report, Abortion Worldwide: A Decade of Uneven Progress, as contraceptive use continues to increase, levels of unintended pregnancy and abortion are declining.

Abortion and its legality in

Of the approximately 42 million abortions that do occur worldwide, almost half are performed by unskilled individuals, in environments that do not meet minimum medical standards or both.

Virtually all of these unsafe abortions take place in the developing world, where the unmet need for contraception remains high and very restrictive abortion laws often are the norm. While they debate, obfuscate and insist on legal prohibitions, the consequences for women, their families and society as a whole continue to be severe and undeniable.

The lack of qualified medical providers, the stigma associated with illegal abortion, poor health systems and grinding poverty all contribute to the high health risks and to the social and financial costs of unsafe abortion. The public health tragedy caused by unsafe abortion is all the more so because it is largely preventable, by improving the quality and availability of postabortion care, by making abortion legal and increasing access to safe services, and—because almost every abortion is preceded by an unintended pregnancy—by expanding access to contraceptive information and services.

The United States legalized abortion nationwide inin part because of the clear evidence that restrictive laws were not ending abortion but were exacting a significant public health toll, notably on lower-income women who could not travel or pay for safe services.

Almost immediately afterward, pregnancy-related deaths and hospitalizations due to complications of unsafe abortion effectively ended. The United States was not the first country and has been far from the last to recognize this relationship and move to liberalize its law.

China was the first large developing country to enact a liberal abortion law—in The Soviet Union and the central and western Asian republics enacted similar laws in the s. Over the next 50 years, abortion become legal on broad grounds in a wide range of less developed countries, including CubaSingaporeIndiaZambiaTunisiaVietnamTurkeyTaiwanMongoliaSouth Africa and Cambodia Indeed, the worldwide trend in abortion law has continued to be toward liberalization.

And sinceanother 21 countries or populous jurisdictions have liberalized their laws, including Colombia, Ethiopia, Iran, Mexico City, Nepal Portugal and Thailand. During this same period, only three countries—El Salvador, Nicaragua and Poland—have increased restrictions.

Ironically, the abortion laws governing most of the countries in these regions are holdovers from the colonial era, imposed by European countries that have long ago abandoned such restrictive laws for themselves.

Unsafe abortion there is a leading cause of pregnancy-related death. Moreover, at current rates, half of all Ugandan women will require treatment for complications related to abortion at some point in their lives.

The Heavy Toll of Unsafe Abortion The fact is that almost all unsafe abortions occur in the developing world see chart. According to the World Health Organization, unsafe abortion is the cause of 70, maternal deaths each year—or one in eight pregnancy-related deaths among women.

That translates to seven women per hour. Approximately eight million more women per year suffer postabortion complications that can lead to short- or long-term consequences, including anemia, prolonged weakness, chronic inflammation of the reproductive tract and secondary infertility.

Connect With Us

Of the women who experience serious complications each year, nearly three million never receive treatment. Restrictive laws have much less impact on stopping women from ending an unwanted pregnancy than on forcing those who are determined to do so to seek out clandestine means.

In countries with such restrictive laws, women who can pay can sometimes find a qualified provider willing to perform an abortion; however, the vast majority of women in poor countries are too poor to avail themselves of this underground network. The measurable effect of these economic realities, which relate directly to the secrecy and stigma attached to abortion where the law and culture are disapproving, shows up in the high rates of death and disability that women suffer from taking the decision into their own hands.

Women themselves or untrained providers use a variety of traditional and often dangerous methods to end an unwanted pregnancy, such as inserting sticks into the vagina, drinking bleach or applying extreme pressure to the abdomen, which often result in severe complications, such as hemorrhage.

Fear of being discovered breaking the law or being accused of promiscuity causes many women to choose secrecy over their own safety. The shaming and blaming of women who have abortions in many of these cultures is an impediment to their seeking out the necessary postabortion medical care to save their lives.

Yet, even if a woman makes it to a medical facility, too many health centers in developing countries simply do not have the capacity to deliver quality care for the complications resulting from an unsafe abortion. Health systems in these countries are usually strained and inadequate to begin with.

However, the weak infrastructure is often further compounded by a lack of trained personnel and supplies, as well as judgmental or punitive attitudes among staff toward women seeking postabortion treatment. Even contraceptive counseling to help women avoid a future unwanted pregnancy is often unavailable: Studies of women treated for complications of clandestine abortion in the Dominican Republic, Peru and a poor southern state in Mexico found that women often left without a contraceptive method.

However, even in countries with highly restrictive laws, these high financial burdens can be avoided or at least reduced through prevention. According to a case study in Nigeria, for example, the cost of providing contraceptive services to enable women to avoid the unintended pregnancies that end in unsafe abortion would be only one-quarter of what Nigerian health facilities spend to provide postabortion care.

Similarly, according to Nepalese government hospitals records, soon after abortion was legalized inthe number of women admitted for complications of unsafe abortion and the severity of those complications declined markedly; pregnancy-related deaths in Nepal also declined.

Changing the law is only the beginning, however, and by itself is no guarantee that unsafe abortion will cease to exist.

Search form

For example, abortion has been legal in Zambia since However, safe services remain out of reach for most women there for several reasons:Abortion law permits, prohibits, restricts, or otherwise regulates the availability of feelthefish.comon has been a controversial subject in many societies through history on religious, moral, ethical, practical, and political grounds.

It has been banned frequently and otherwise limited by law. However, abortions continue to be common in many areas, even where they are illegal.

Abortion in the United States - Wikipedia Abortion The abortion debate most commonly relates to the "induced abortion" of an embryo or fetus at some point in a pregnancy, which is also how the term is used in a legal sense. In medical parlance, "abortion" can refer to either miscarriage or abortion until the fetus is viable.
This section needs additional citations for verification.
This section needs additional citations for verification.
Abortion Procedures During First, Second and Third Trimester An overview of the history and legality of abortion in the United States.
This section needs additional citations for verification.

A Partial Birth Abortion ban was passed by the Supreme Court, and although its wording is open to interpretation, it essentially states that the act of termination of .

Printable version of this fact sheet (PDF file, 34K). Surgical abortion is one of the safest types of medical procedures. Complications from having a first-trimester aspiration abortion are considerably less frequent and less serious than those associated with giving birth.

Women around the world have used abortion to control their reproduction at every point in history, and in every known society — regardless of its legality. In the United States, abortion was widely practiced before about , by which time most states had banned it except to save the life of the woman.

Abortion was once a very dangerous procedure but now it is extremely safe. In the death risk from abortion was deaths per , women. Before there were even more deaths as it was an illegal procedure, and.

Oct 12,  · In Uganda, where abortion is illegal and sex education programs focus only on abstinence, the estimated abortion rate was 54 per 1, women in .

Abortion law - Wikipedia