Free contraception helps Finland reduce teenage abortions by 66%

By Anne Kauranen
June 3, 2024

HELSINKI (Reuters) - The number of teenage abortions in Finland fell by 66% between 2000 and 2023, its public health institute THL said on Monday, attributing the reduction to the offer of free contraception to adolescents and compulsory sex education in schools.

Finland also passed a law in 2022 liberalising abortion, at a time of deep divisions over abortion rights in Europe and court rulings in the U.S. that restricted access to terminations of unwanted pregnancies for millions of people there.

The number of abortions among women under 20 rose during the 1990s in Finland, which led the Nordic country to respond at the start of the 2000s by making morning-after pills available without prescription from 15 years of age and sexual education compulsory in all schools.


Finland – Change in abortion law – starting September 1st, abortion will only require pregnant individual’s request

28 AUGUST 2023

Significant changes are set to take effect in Finland's abortion legislation, known as the abortion law, starting from September 1st. Under the new law, obtaining an abortion will no longer require the previously mandatory two medical certificates. As a result, individuals seeking abortion will have one less doctor's appointment to attend. Furthermore, up until the 12th week of pregnancy, an abortion can be performed solely upon the pregnant individual's request. This amendment is grounded in the principle of expanding patient autonomy.

It's important to note that this legal change does not apply to pregnancies that have surpassed the 12-week mark.


Embattled Finland minister quits amid new ‘mass abortions for Africa’ scandal

By David Mac Dougall 

The extremist comments and behaviour of Vilhelm Junnila have come under scrutiny since his appointment as minister for economic affairs just last Tuesday.

Finland's minister for economic affairs resigned on Friday, a little more than a week after taking office, amid a flurry of scandals linking him to neo-Nazi ideology. 

Vilhelm Junnila, of the far-right Finns Party, quit amid a new furore over comments he made in parliament where he said a solution for the climate crisis is to give more abortions to African women.  He called the concept "climate abortions".


Abortion now on the table of Finnish government talks

By Pekka Vanttinen |
Jun 1, 2023

The Christian Democrats are pushing for the right of healthcare workers to refuse to carry out abortions amid the now five-week-long government talks, Hufvudstadsbladet reported on Thursday.

The Christian Democrats, currently in government talks with the National Coalition Party, the Finns Party and the Swedish People’s Party, would like to see the right to be included in the programme, reported HBL. The Christian Democrats refused to deny or confirm the news.


Finland – Amendments to the Abortion Act approved

Finnish government,Ministry of Social Affairs and Health

The President of the Republic has approved the amendments to the Abortion Act. In future, a pregnancy may be terminated solely based on the pregnant woman’s request until the end of the twelfth week of pregnancy. In the 1970 Act, an opinion by two doctors was required in most cases for the termination of pregnancy, and grounds had to be presented.

The legislative amendment will not change the regulation in cases where abortion is carried out after the twelfth week of pregnancy. At the request of the pregnant woman, pregnancy may also be ended after the twelfth week of pregnancy if the continuation of pregnancy or giving birth would endanger the life or health of the pregnant woman. In this case, two doctors must be of the opinion that the termination is necessary.


Finland reforms abortion law to replace outdated legislation

By The Associated Press
Wed., Oct. 26, 2022

HELSINKI (AP) — Lawmakers have approved a legislative reform that will ease the process of getting an abortion in Finland, which currently has the Nordic region’s strictest abortion law, dating back to 1970 and seen by many citizens as outdated.

Finland’s 200-seat Eduskunta legislature on Wednesday voted by a wide margin 125-41 in favor of a law reform that will, among other things, abolish the need for approval from two doctors to terminate a pregnancy.


COVID-19 impacted access to abortion care all over Europe

Access to abortion care is an important and politically charged topic. It is a human rights issue affecting essential aspects of women’s healthcare. As a global disruptive event, COVID-19 affected abortion access in many European countries.

Jun 9, 2021
University of Oulu

Government policies on abortion are a longstanding topic of heated political debate. The COVID-19 pandemic shook health care systems to the core adding to the complexity of the issue, as the imposed national lockdowns and mobility restrictions affected millions of women’s timely access to abortion care across the globe. Researchers from Finland and France examined how all of the European Union countries and the United Kingdom responded to the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 crisis in terms of providing access to abortion care.


Finland has the lowest abortion rate among Nordic countries

08 APRIL 2021

Recent figures from the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare (THL) have revealed that Finland has the lowest rate of induced abortions among Nordic countries.

It also has the strictest abortion laws, being the only Nordic country where women need to acquire the signature of at least one doctor (in some cases two) to terminate an unwanted pregnancy.


Finland – 50K signatures for citizens’ initiative on abortion law reform

Current laws are from 1970 and require two doctors' testimonials before a woman can terminate a pregnancy.


A citizens’ initiative to bring Finland’s abortion laws into the 21st century has gathered more than 50,000 signatures from supporters, compelling lawmakers to consider the changes it proposes.

The legislative proposal seeks to do away with the requirement for a woman to get clearance from two doctors before she can have an abortion. According to the Feminist Association Unioni, the main sponsor of the initiative, medicalising abortion places an unwarranted burden on the healthcare system. It also unnecessarily prolongs the process, since the majority of terminations no longer require hospital procedures.


Finland – Foreign Minister Soini faces no action over anti-abortion blog post

Foreign Minister Soini faces no action over anti-abortion blog post
The Chancellor of Justice threw out two formal complaints over Timo Soini's online opinions, citing free speech.


Finland's Chancellor of Justice Tuomas Pöysti ruled on Tuesday that Foreign Minister Timo Soini will face no consequences over his public anti-abortion sentiments.

Pöysti overruled two complaints he had received in connection to one of Soini's blog posts, wherein he defended the Argentine Senate's decision to scrap a proposal to make abortion legal in the country. The view was at odds with the government's official policy line.