Half of world's abortions deemed unsafe by WHO


Of the 55.7 million abortions performed each year, the new report found, more than 25 million of those are considered "unsafe".

The study was conducted by World Health Organization in partnership with the american institute Guttmacher, specialized in birth control.

"Despite that", Ganatra continued, "we still have one in two abortions that are unsafe because of all the other barriers that exist around the issue".

According to a new study, almost half of abortions conducted around the world aren't safe.

"Less safe" abortions - accounting for 30.7 percent of the total - include those induced with the drug misoprostol without the support of professional health providers, or those performed by trained personnel using outdated methods, such as scraping the lining of the uterus with a surgical tool.

Northern Europe and Northern America are now the safest places to get an abortion, but many are anxious that North America may become unsafe due to the current administration's view on the procedure.

The American Academy of Family Physicians has more on abortion.

The proportion of abortions that were safe in Eastern Asia, including China, was similar to developed regions.

The authors of the study, which was published in medical journal "The Lancet," stated that 97 percent of all unsafe abortions took place in developing countries.

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"When women and girls can not access effective contraception and safe abortion services, there are serious consequences for their own health and that of their families", Dr Bela Ganatra, lead author of the study and a scientist in the WHO Department of Reproductive Health and Research, said.

It said these regions also have some of the lowest abortion rates.

Such a disparity often emerges when any health outcome is measured in developed versus developing regions, but safe abortion care is possible in developing countries, Ganatra said. This is not how things are done in a medical or surgical abortion, but it is how some of the world's most disadvantaged women are treated in lieu of decent healthcare.

Overall, nearly all abortions in developed countries were deemed safe, whereas roughly half of those in developing countries were safe, according to the findings.

"Women are going to have abortions when they are faced with the situation where they need it and if they can't get access to safe ones they will go further down the spectrum to less safe and perhaps even unsafe", she said.

US President Donald Trump has reinstated a policy that requires foreign NGOs that receive US global family planning funds to certify that they do not perform abortions or provide abortion advice as a method of family planning.

And yet, "unsafe abortion is still a major problem in developing countries", they concluded. This is because these places, like northern Europe and northern America 'have less restrictive laws on abortion, high contraceptive use, high economic development, high levels of gender equality and well developed health infrastructures'. Those complications included incomplete abortions, hemorrhaging and infections.

The research offers evidence that women around the world continue to have abortions even when they live in areas where trained providers are scant and where the procedure is illegal.

Differing laws around the world had an impact on abortion safety around the world, according to the study.