Germany’s abortion law: made by the Nazis, upheld by today’s right
An old 1930s law that hinders women’s access to information about terminations has survived public protest – and is being exploited by anti-abortion groups
Wed 8 Jan 2020
It’s like the holocaust only worse, according to babycaust.de, the German website dedicated to abortion, or as they call it: “The mass murder of unborn children.”
Every country has its nutters. The problem with these particular nutters is that their website is your best bet if you need to find a doctor who performs abortions in Germany. It provides a full list of practitioners with the “licence to kill” by town and postcode, decorated with images of hacked-up babies in petri dishes, some of them made into gifs to show the blood still dripping. Whatever for? They obviously don’t want you to go to these doctors. But they do want to make it easier for you to report these “killers” to the police.
Becoming An Abortion Provider Is Filled With Barriers, Too
By Jo Yurcaba
Jan 2, 2020
When Dr. Elise Boos was a third-year medical resident, she would drive five hours north throughout the year to a clinic in Shreveport, Louisiana — one of the three abortion clinics in the state — to learn how to provide first and second trimester abortions. She and the other residents had to stay at a nearby hotel for two weeks at a time. Boos, who is now a fellow with Physicians for Reproductive Health, says the rotation reinforced the stigma of the procedure for her, "because you had to leave town in order to get this training," she says. "It was hard to imagine how you could do that work in the South and still be a member of the medical community."
Activists in Germany demand legalization of abortion
Abortion in Germany, while pratically possible for most women, technically remains a criminal offence in all cases. Opponents of the laws want a full legalization, but that alone won't improve access, some activists say.
There, in the German Criminal Code, between the laws on murder and abandonment, sit paragraphs 218 and 219. They pertain to — and criminalize — abortion in Germany. On Saturday, activists will be taking to the streets to demand the paragraphs' removal as part of a global abortion rights demonstration.
Sarah Thibol, activist with the feminist organization Frauen*Kollektiv in Cologne, is one of many planning to protest. Her personal goal is "that women realize abortions are not legal in German. So many people are surprised the first time they hear that."
Tired of hiding: five doctors who provide abortions come out
They’re fearless, defiant, and increasingly angry at the mounting threats in the US to reproductive rights. Here, they reveal why the reasons why they choose to go public
by Carey Dunne
Tue 6 Aug 2019
On a frigid evening in January, Dr Katie McHugh welcomed 20 guests into her Indianapolis home and prepared to tell them a secret she had kept for seven years. They had come for a Planned Parenthood fundraiser party; among them were her father and two sisters. As they gathered in her living room, sipping wine, McHugh’s hands shook.
“I was quite nervous, but I wanted to get my secret out as soon as I could,” she says. “I said, ‘Welcome. I’m glad you’re all here. I’m Katie McHugh. I’m an OB-GYN here in Indianapolis, and I’m also an abortion provider.’ My father visibly flinched. Then I stopped to take a breath, and everyone applauded, including my family.
Rwanda: How Literate are Health Care Providers about Abortion?
By Dan Ngabonziza
June 10, 2019
Therese Mujawayezu is a 4th year medical student pursuing General Medicine at the University of Rwanda (UR).
Since childhood, she has been hearing elders describe abortion as a crime, a taboo – to be precise. As a medical student nearing completion and join the job market, Mujawayezu has been shying away whenever a subject on abortion comes up among her peers.
Germany: Where providing information on abortion remains a crime
Abortion is anything but simple in Germany. Just providing information about the procedure can lead to criminal charges, with several doctors charged in the past few months. Abortion is only legal under certain circumstances, leading to high tensions within the medical community. Fewer and fewer doctors are providing abortions and the subject remains taboo. Last weekend both pro-choice and anti-abortion activists took to the streets of Berlin. Our correspondents report.
A programme prepared by Patrick Lovett and Emerald Maxwell.
The Future Abortionists of America
Abortions are simple procedures, yet fewer than 0.2% of U.S. doctors perform them. Meet the new guard trying to improve access for all.
Sep 4, 2018
A sign in the lobby of the Philadelphia hotel read:
THERE ARE NO EVENTS SCHEDULED FOR TODAY
Please enjoy your day!
Meanwhile, in the ballroom upstairs, a significant portion of America’s current and future abortion providers were eating breakfast. The fake-out sign was one of multiple security measures, but the atmosphere at the Medical Students for Choice (MSFC) national conference still hummed with energy. Over the course of a day and a half, 450-plus medical students tried to absorb as much information as possible about providing abortions, information that — depending on where they go to school — can be extremely difficult to get. The vast majority of attendees were women in their early twenties. When the organization’s executive director Lois Backus announced that one of the two men’s rooms would defect for the weekend, an involuntary cheer passed through the audience, followed by laughter.
Want to Protect the Right to Abortion? Train More People to Perform Them
By Jody Steinauer
Aug. 29, 2018
When I was in medical school in the 1990s, it was rare to hear abortion mentioned as an option for pregnant women at all — let alone for there to be in-depth training on how to counsel patients on a full range of pregnancy options, including termination. My generation of physicians simply wasn’t prepared to provide basic, comprehensive reproductive health care. Even though it had been 20 years since Roe v. Wade legalized abortion nationwide, only 12 percent of obstetrics and gynecology residency programs at the time included abortion training.
Twenty-five years later, the training situation has, fortunately, improved. But there is still work to do: More than a third of ob-gyn residency programs don’t offer routine abortion training. Some programs offer training only on treating someone who is managing a miscarriage, so those residents do not gain skills in counseling and caring for women who want to end their pregnancies. Most family medicine residency programs still have no abortion training at all, even though family physicians are critical for providing high-quality family planning within primary care services.
Germany's medical system sidelines abortion
Abortion doctors can be hard to find in Germany. In some cities there are none, and their number appears to be declining, while medical schools often fail to teach the procedure so crucial to women. Papayas help a bit.
Author Nancy Isenson
Around 101,200 abortions were performed in Germany in 2017, or 277 each day. It's not exactly a rare procedure. Which is why future doctor Alicia Baier was disturbed to find that abortion played virtually no role in her studies at Berlin's Charité university medical school.
"In six years of studies, in which we learn many details that we will not need later, we learn almost nothing about such an important intervention," she says.
How abortion stigma is exposing medical students to risky behaviors in Uganda
20th April, 2018
Sex is a reality, and we are proud to be sex-positive. As long as people are engaging in consensual experiences, safe2choose encourages and supports it. We do so by sharing accurate and stigma-free information, as well as facilitating access to safe abortion methods.
True autonomy comes with deep understanding of your options, your risks and your benefits. Therefore, one can never be autonomous without education on sexual and reproductive health and rights. Sadly, that’s exactly what we have witnessed among medical students from Uganda.