A helping hand, a listening ear: abortion helpline in India

A helping hand, a listening ear: abortion
helpline in India, where 10 women a day die from unsafe terminations, offers
counselling and access to a safe clinic

Priti Salian
6 Aug, 2020

Yet another consequence of the coronavirus pandemic has been to restrict the
access of millions of women in lockdown to their choice of birth control. India
is seeing millions of unintended pregnancies – and risky abortions.

Zainab Mandlawala will never forget her own experience on a March afternoon in
2018. After waiting for hours, a gynaecologist finally led her into the
operating room and numbed her cervix with a local anaesthetic. She then
performed a “D&C” – dilation and curettage – abortion.

Continued: https://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/health-wellness/article/3096082/helping-hand-listening-ear-abortion-helpline-india-where


There could be 7 million unplanned pregnancies because of COVID-19

Angela Betsaida B. Laguipo
Aug 2 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has rippled across the globe, infecting nearly 18 million individuals worldwide to date. Though the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) affects people from all walks of life, women and girls may experience devastating effects of the outbreak.

A new report published in the journal The Lancet reveals the adverse effects of the coronavirus disease, caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), and highlights the impacts of COVID-19 on women's health.

Continued: https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200802/There-could-be-7-million-unplanned-pregnancies-because-of-COVID-19.aspx


COVID-19 has “devastating” effect on women and girls

Sophie Cousins, The Lancet
August 01, 2020
DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)31679-2

Natalia Kanem, executive director of the UN Population Fund, is among experts warning about disrupted health services and a surge in gender-based violence. Sophie Cousins reports.

As the COVID-19 pandemic accelerates, fears are increasing about the effect of the pandemic on women's and girls' sexual and reproductive health and their access to care. In response to COVID-19, in March, WHO issued interim guidance for maintaining essential services during an outbreak, which included advice to prioritise services related to reproductive health and make efforts to avert maternal and child mortality and morbidity.

Continued: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(20)31679-2/fulltext


Latin America – Covid-19 hospital beds and abortion

There is hard evidence that the pandemic presents a heightened risk to reproductive health

DEBORA DINIZ and GISELLE CARINO
31 JUL 2020

“Abortion is a public health matter,” scientists say. This notion seems a bit abstract – how can a criminalized practice constitute a public health need? The Covid-19 pandemic is a teachable moment. But it is the teaching of horror: according to the World Health Organization, thousands of women visit health services every month to receive care for incomplete abortions. In Argentina, the figure was 3,330 women; in Chile, 1,522; in Colombia, 7,778; and in Mexico, 18,285, in different years. According to the Guttmacher Institute, 760,000 women in Latin America and the Caribbean are treated annually at healthcare services because of complications from unsafe abortions, averaging out to 63,000 beds a month. When a woman goes to a hospital for complications from an unsafe abortion, she might end up needing a bed twice: once, to treat the unsafe abortion and next, to be treated for the Covid-19 she contracted in the hospital.

Continued: https://english.elpais.com/opinion/2020-07-31/covid-19-hospital-beds-and-abortion.html


COVID-19 is changing the way Canadians have abortions

BY TEGWYN HUGHES
POSTED ON JULY 30, 2020

As health care providers continue to adapt to the demands of COVID-19, doctors in Canada say that the crisis proves we need accessible abortion services more than ever.

From routine procedures to life-saving surgeries, health authorities have deemed different services either essential or non-essential to prioritize emergency care. This need to prioritize health care based on urgency has reopened debates about the kinds of services we consider important.

Continued: https://the-pigeon.ca/2020/07/30/covid-19-abortions/


Italy: Covid-19 Exacerbates Obstacles to Legal Abortion

Inadequate Measures Heighten Existing Risks for Health, Lives

July 30, 2020

(London) – Government inaction has left women and girls facing avoidable obstacles to accessing legal abortion in Italy during the Covid-19 pandemic, putting their health and lives at risk, Human Rights Watch said today.

The government’s failure to ensure clear pathways to essential, time-sensitive medical care during the pandemic caused interruptions to abortion services and prevented some women from accessing abortion within the legal time limit, exacerbating longstanding barriers to safe and legal abortion in Italy.

Continued: https://www.hrw.org/news/2020/07/30/italy-covid-19-exacerbates-obstacles-legal-abortion


Federal agencies appeal suspension of abortion pill rule

BY MICHAEL KUNZELMAN, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Posted Jul 30, 2020

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Trump administration has asked a federal appeals court
to reinstate a rule that has required women to visit a hospital, clinic or
medical office to obtain an abortion pill during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A federal judge in Maryland agreed earlier this month to temporarily block
enforcement of the rule. Justice Department attorneys asked U.S. District Judge
Theodore Chuang to suspend his July 13 order while they appeal, but the judge
refused on Thursday.

Continued: https://www.660citynews.com/2020/07/30/federal-agencies-appeal-suspension-of-abortion-pill-rule/


Brazil: Access to abortion during Covid-19

July 29, 2020 (International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion)

An initiative to help women to have a safe, legal abortion: a network of women, proactive, advocating for the decriminalisation of abortion in Brazil. An initiative of mutual solidarity: horizontal and self-sustaining.

by Maíra Marques, Director of Communications, Milhas Pela Vida das Mulheres

During the morning of 21 October 2019, a 31-year-old woman (J.) was admitted to the Pérola Byington Hospital in downtown São Paulo (SP), where she had an appointment for psychiatric counselling. A victim of gang rape, she had been receiving treatment for 20 days. Once again, she passed by the tents of “40 Days for Life in SP”, a group of anti-abortion activists who had decided to settle there during the Covid-19 quarantine, trying they said, to convert health professionals and women who have come to the hospital for a legal termination of a pregnancy. According to a report by the Public Journalism Agency, J. attempted to talk to the group that morning, to tell them her story, but without success. Instead, she was beaten up by these militants, some of whom were women, who punched her and put her in a headlock. These violent acts were witnessed by a lawyer, who accompanied her to the nearest police station.

Continued: https://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/blog/brazil-access-to-abortion-during-covid-19/


An Abortion Doula On Canada’s Problematic Lack Of Access

Sarah Ratchford
Last Updated July 28, 2020

As an abortion doula, Shannon Hardy spends her days driving people to appointments or taking care of them afterwards. That all changed when the pandemic started. Sharing a car with a stranger, not to mention helping them convalesce, has been out of the question since COVID-19, leaving many without access to this crucial healthcare service.

Getting an abortion in Atlantic Canada, where Hardy lives, was a challenge even before coronavirus. Though abortions have been decriminalized in Canada since 1988, provinces have jurisdiction over access. As a result, where and at what point in a pregnancy you can get an abortion is influenced by the local political climate, and varies widely. Mifegymiso, the pill that induces what's called a medical abortion, is available and covered by provincial healthcare, but not every doctor will prescribe it. In some places, there's access to surgical abortions, but parts or all of it are not covered or you have to pay up front and seek reimbursement afterward.

Continued: https://www.refinery29.com/en-ca/abortion-doula-canada-access


UK – Rise in abortions as more than 200 Norfolk women unable to access contraceptive care in lockdown

28 July 2020
Sarah Burgess

Abortion services have seen an increased demand during lockdown as more than 200 women across Norfolk have struggled to access contraceptive care.

The coronavirus pandemic has meant many women’s preferred choice of contraception is unavailable - such as the fitting of long-acting contraception like implants and coils.

Continued: https://www.edp24.co.uk/news/health/abortions-and-contraceptive-care-coronavirus-lockdown-1-6765738