Trump’s reinstatement and expansion of the global gag rule has harmful effects for women, men, and children

Trump’s reinstatement and expansion of the global gag rule has harmful effects for women, men, and children

Jan 11, 2019
Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, Ernestina Coast, and Nicky Armstrong

Two years ago this month, President Trump reinstated and expanded the global gag rule – the perennial Republican policy which cuts US funding for any organisation worldwide which offers abortion services or counselling. Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, Ernestina Coast and Nicky Armstrong argue that not only will the measure – which covers a pot of nearly $10 billion in funding for NGOs – be ineffective in reducing the number of abortions, it will also harm women’s’ reproductive health as well as making other crucial health services less available to women, men, and children around the world.

Who influences whether women in poorer countries can access abortions and other sexual health services? It may surprise you, but the US president has an important part to play. This is because of the so called “global gag rule”(GGR), a US foreign policy that cuts family planning and reproductive health assistance to any healthcare provider overseas which offers and provides abortions.

Continued: http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/usappblog/2019/01/11/trumps-reinstatement-and-expansion-of-the-global-gag-rule-has-harmful-effects-for-women-men-and-children/

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Zimbabwe – Make abortion safe: NGO

Make abortion safe: NGO

Mashonaland Central Correspondent
Dec 3, 2018

THERE is need to broaden circumstances under which abortion is permitted and to ensure the availability of safe, legal abortion services, as well as post-abortion care to reduce clandestine and unsafe procedures.

This was said by a non-governmental organisation, Right Here Right Now, in Bindura last week. Right Here Right Now, which is part of a consortium of NGOs that include Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, Real Open Opportunities Trust Support and Katswe Sisterhood, revealed that Zimbabwe had one of the highest maternal mortality ratios in the world, estimated at 651 maternal deaths per 100 000 live births in contrast to a worldwide trend of declines.

Continued: https://www.herald.co.zw/make-abortion-safe-ngo/

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Kenya – Abortion: Rights group sues ministry, officials over Marie Stopes ban

Abortion: Rights group sues ministry, officials over Marie Stopes ban

Dec. 01, 2018
By LILLIAN MUTAVI

The Centre for Reproductive Rights on Friday sued the Ministry of Health and other state officials over the recent ban on Marie Stopes over safe abortions.

The lobby group filed a suit against the CS for Health, the Director of Medical Services, the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board, the Kenya Film and Classification Board and its CEO Ezekiel Mutua.

Continued: https://www.the-star.co.ke/news/2018/12/01/abortion-rights-group-sues-ministry-officials-over-marie-stopes-ban_c1859353

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How stigma and restricted access stop Indian women from seeking safe abortions

How stigma and restricted access stop Indian women from seeking safe abortions
When women who approach doctors are denied abortion, they are forced to break the law and opt for unsafe abortion. The result? Unsafe abortions is the third leading cause of maternal mortality in India.

Haripriya Suresh and Shiba Kurian
Friday, November 30, 2018

For her first termination of pregnancy, Aishwarya* had gone to a gynaecologist, but was flat out denied by the doctor, who said she would not perform the abortion. The doctor then referred her to a colleague, who turned out to be an IVF specialist. The second doctor, too, denied her the abortion, and instead asked her to carry the pregnancy to term and have a baby. Aishwarya was seven weeks pregnant at the time, but the IVF specialist refused to give her a medical kit, and stated that she was too far along, and asked her to come in for a prohibitively expensive surgery to abort.

“I walked out of the hospital, went to my neighbourhood pharmacy, asked for the kit, and I self-medicated,” Aishwarya says.

Continued: https://www.thenewsminute.com/article/how-stigma-and-restricted-access-stop-indian-women-seeking-safe-abortions-92505

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Despite Widespread Support for Postabortion Care, Many Countries’ Health Systems Do Not Have the Capacity to Provide Essential Services

Despite Widespread Support for Postabortion Care, Many Countries’ Health Systems Do Not Have the Capacity to Provide Essential Services
New 10-Country Study Identifies Gaps in Postabortion Care

First published online: November 29, 2018
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(18)30404-2

There are critical gaps in the provision of postabortion care (PAC) at facilities that offer childbirth delivery services in many countries, highlighting a disconnect between national governments’ commitments to address the consequences of unsafe abortion and the capacity of health systems to provide essential services, according to a new study published today in The Lancet Global Health. “Health Systems' Capacity to Provide Post-Abortion Care: A Multicountry Analysis Using Signal Functions,” by Guttmacher researchers Onikepe Owolabi, Ann Biddlecom and Hannah Whitehead, found an unacceptably low level of appropriate medical care provided to women who experienced complications from abortion or miscarriage and who sought treatment in one of 10 countries across three regions.

Study Summary:
Abortion-related mortality is one of the main causes of maternal mortality worldwide. Laws often restrict the provision of safe abortion care, yet post-abortion care is a service that all countries have committed to provide to manage abortion complications. There is minimal evidence on the capacity of national health systems to provide post-abortion care.

Continued: hhttps://www.guttmacher.org/article/2018/11/health-systems-capacity-provide-post-abortion-care-multicountry-analysis-using

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Nigeria – Women should not die of pregnancy-related diseases: Prevention (1)

Women should not die of pregnancy-related diseases: Prevention (1)

Posted By: Dr Joel Akande
On: November 23, 2018

In reading this article, kindly project a picture as if every woman is your daughter, sister, wife, mother, aunt or friend. By so doing, you place yourself in the position of victims or relatives of victims of the issue that we are going to discuss in this article: maternal mortality. The matter of women dying of pregnancy-related diseases should not happen and all efforts by all stakeholders (government at all levels, women themselves, families, nurses, physicians and the nation in general) should be geared toward the prevention of maternal (and child) deaths.

Every year in Nigeria, several thousands of women die of diseases related to pregnancy. Specifically, as at 2015 which is when the latest figures were made available, about 814 of women for every 100,000 of live births die in Nigeria every year. Nigeria is in the top tier where women and children die most in the world. This figure only relates to live births and does not include deaths of women that occur because of abortion whereby the expelled fetus was not alive at the time of the abortion.

Continued: http://thenationonlineng.net/women-not-die-pregnancy-related-diseases-prevention-1/

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Dominican Republic: Abortion Ban Endangers Health

Dominican Republic: Abortion Ban Endangers Health
Criminal Penalties Violate Rights

November 19, 2018

(Santo Domingo) – The Dominican Republic’s total ban on abortion threatens women's health and lives and violates their rights, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Abortion is illegal in the Dominican Republic in all circumstances, even when a pregnancy is life-threatening, unviable, or the result of rape.

The 78-page report, “‘It’s Your Decision, It’s Your Life’: The Total Criminalization of Abortion in the Dominican Republic,” documents that women and girls facing unwanted pregnancies have clandestine abortions, often at great risk to their health and lives. Many experience health complications from unsafe abortions, and some die. Some women and girls face abuse, neglect, or mistreatment by healthcare providers. The ban does not stop abortion but drives it underground and makes it less safe. As a starting place toward meeting the country’s human rights obligations, Congress should decriminalize abortion in three circumstances.

Continued: https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/11/19/dominican-republic-abortion-ban-endangers-health

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Video: Malawi Government Considers Liberalizing Abortion Laws

Malawi Government Considers Liberalizing Abortion Laws

November 09, 2018
Lameck Masina

Malawi's government is considering a proposal to liberalize the country's abortion laws. Currently, abortion is allowed only when a woman's life is in danger, and many pregnant women turn to risky, unsafe procedures to end unwanted pregnancies. However, the draft law faces stiff opposition from religious leaders who say abortion is a sin. Lameck Masina has the story from Blantyre.

Continued: https://www.voanews.com/a/malawi-government-considers-liberalizing-abortion-laws/4651627.html

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How a Change in U.S. Abortion Policy Threatens Lives in Malawi

How a Change in U.S. Abortion Policy Threatens Lives in Malawi

Hannah Evans, Population, Health, and Environment Specialist
Posted on November 9, 2018

“On average, in a day, sometimes we handle about ten women related to abortion cases,” Sylvester Zimba explains to a reporter from Vice News in August of 2017. Zimba is a nurse who specializes in post-abortion care at Kasungu District Hospital, a small clinic in rural Malawi and the sole medical facility for 600,000 people.

Zimba explains that many women come to the clinic claiming they have experienced a spontaneous abortion despite what a later examination usually reveals: informal, induced procedures generally referred to as “back alley abortions” commonly cause life-threatening complications for which professional medical attention is required.

Continued: https://www.populationconnection.org/how-a-change-in-u-s-abortion-policy-threatens-lives-in-malawi/

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It’s time to talk about what a lack of access to safe abortion means

It’s time to talk about what a lack of access to safe abortion means

Viviana Waisman
18 October 2018

This year, something has changed about the way we talk about abortion. You can feel it on the street, on Twitter, in the media.... Something has changed, and there’s no turning back.

In May, the vote on the Irish referendum to legalize abortion filled me with hope. Thanks to the energy of young Irish people, a major victory was won for women’s rights.

Continued: https://www.opendemocracy.net/democraciaabierta/viviana-waisman/it-s-time-to-talk-about-what-lack-of-access-to-safe-abortion-means

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