Nearly half of abortions annually are unsafe

Nearly half of abortions annually are unsafe

Nearly half of abortions annually are unsafe

"The vast majority in the Latin America region were performed under less safe conditions (59.7%) while in Africa the majority of unsafe abortions were performed under the least safe conditions (48%)", said Dr. Bela Ganatra, the study's lead author.

Getty Images Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) is joined by local lawmakers and womens health advocates to call for Florida Governor Rick Scotts veto of a recently passed measure that they feel severely restricts access to safe and legal abortions on April 27, 2015 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

While working in Zambia, she saw many women with serious infections and suffering from heavy bleeding as a result of having an unsafe abortion. About 55 per cent of all abortions from 2010 to 2014 were conducted safely.

The new analysis distinguished, for the first time, among three categories of abortion: safe, meaning a trained provider used a method recommended by World Health Organization; less-safe, meaning either the provider was untrained or the method was outdated; and least-safe, meaning an untrained provider used unsafe methods.

The least safe abortions were provided by untrained individuals using risky methods, including ingestion of caustic substances, insertion of foreign objects, or use of traditional concoctions like roots and herbs.

The exception was Eastern Europe, where the proportion of unsafe abortions was slightly higher at 14.2% compared to 6.5% in Western Europe. Firstly, figures may include deaths as a result of spontaneous abortion, otherwise known as miscarriage, giving a distorted picture of the number of women who are dying as a result of induced abortion.

The percentage of abortions in North America that were considered safe.

The percentage of abortions that were safe in low-income countries.

In developed countries, 87.5% of abortions are considered " safe ".

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Deaths are highest in West and Central Africa, at around 450 per 100,000 abortions, although the study authors warn that the mortality estimates are based on data from different time periods, The Guardian UK says.

Uruguay, Nepal and Ethiopia have made safe abortion accessible in recent years, she added. In these countries, 49.5% of abortions were unsafe.

Unsafe abortion occurs when a pregnancy is terminated either by persons lacking the necessary skills/information or in an environment that does not conform to minimal medical standards, or both.

The researchers wrote in the new study, "this analysis suggested that unsafe abortion is still a major problem in developing countries and that progress towards safer abortion is needed, even in some developed countries".

Ms. Ganatra said to prevent unintended pregnancies and unsafe abortions, countries must make supportive policies and financial commitments to provide comprehensive sexuality education; a wide range of contraceptive methods, including emergency contraception; accurate family planning counselling; and access to safe, legal abortion.

Overall, nearly all abortions in developed countries were deemed safe, whereas roughly half of those in developing countries were safe, according to the findings. In developed countries, 12.5% of abortions were unsafe.

Indeed, complications from in-clinic and medication abortions (when done following the correct procedures and under the guidance of a trained individual) are extremely rare.

The findings highlight a strong link between abortion laws and safety.

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