As some European countries rolled out ‘telemed’ abortion, others shut down access completely.
by Sarah Hurtes and Daniel Boffey
Wed 21 Apr 2021
Kay, 34, realised her period was late a month into Britain’s lockdown. The coronavirus death count was spiralling across the country. Covid-19 was putting the NHS under unprecedented strain and Boris Johnson had given the British people what he described as “a very simple instruction” in an address to the nation from Downing Street: “You must stay at home.”
A worrying, unsettling time, and Kay, a mother of a six-year-old girl, needed to get hold of a pregnancy test kit. She went online and, two days later, took delivery of the test, learning of a positive result via two pink lines. It was the news she had dreaded.
28 SEP 2020
By Lisa Juanola, KIT SRHR Advisor and Irene de Vries, KIT Advisor on SRHR, Maternal and Newborn Care.
Internationally, the fight for the right to safe and legal abortion is ongoing. The Netherlands is blessed with liberal laws and good access to safe abortion care, meaning it often serves as an example. The Netherlands is also a leading country when it comes to women’s rights and reproductive health. However, things could be even better and more women-friendly. What does The Netherlands have to offer in the global fight for safe and legal abortion, and what can we learn from international developments in this field?
As an evaluation shows, the Dutch ‘Termination of Pregnancy Act’ is working well. The number of terminations is stable at around 8.6 per 1,000 women aged 15 to 45, and The Netherlands has one of the lowest rates of abortion in the world.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, 2020
Rebecca Gomperts is one of Time Magazine's 100 most influential people this year. The Dutch activist has dedicated her life to trying to get women safe access to abortions in countries where abortion is illegal.
Gomperts is the founder of Women on Waves, which involves a ship with an on board abortion clinic. Women are taken from countries where abortion is illegal by boat to this ship on international waters, where they can get the treatment they need.
For immediate release, September 23nd, 2020
Dr. Rebecca Gomperts, founder of Women on Web, Women on Waves and AidAccess, has been chosen among the 100 most influential people of the world in 2020 by Time magazine.
Cecile Richards writes for Time 100: "In this moment of fear and uncertainty, Gomperts is a beacon of hope, standing up for the principle that safe abortion is a human right."
The full list of the Time most influential people of 2020 can be seen here: time.com/time100
Court rejects plea for easier access to abortion pills
April 11, 2020
Judges in The Hague have rejected a court application to force the health ministry to make the abortion pill available to women who are unable to make the requisite visit to an clinic because of the corona crisis.
Women who want to terminate an early pregnancy are bound by law to visit an abortion clinic before they can be given the drugs. However, the current coronavirus restrictions are making this impossible for at least two women in the Netherlands who are self-isolating, pro-abortion organisation Women on Waves and women’s support agency Bureau Clara Wichmann said last week.
Health minister urged to guarantee abortion pill access amid corona restrictions
April 3, 2020
Pro-abortion organisation Women on Waves and women’s support agency Bureau Clara Wichmann are urging health minister Hugo de Jonge to act swiftly to make the abortion pill available to women who are unable to make the requisite visit to an abortion clinic because of the corona crisis.
Women who want to terminate an early pregnancy are bound by law to visit an abortion clinic before they can be given the drugs. The current coronavirus restrictions are making this impossible for at least two women in the Netherlands who are self-isolating, the organisations said. Both women want to terminate their pregnancy within the first trimester using the abortion pill.
“Abortion buddies” to help pregnant women as protesters get more intimidating
By Janene Pieters
on March 2, 2020
From Monday, women visiting abortion clinics in Rotterdam and The Hague can call on an "abortion buddy" to escort them into the clinic and past the anti-abortion protesters often hanging around the clinics. The around 20 volunteers' task is to accompany women as they enter the clinic and be a screen for these already vulnerable women against the protesters, at the initiative of feminism platform De Bovengrondse and the Humanistisch Verbond.
Last year, a majority in the lower house of Dutch parliament supported letting municipalities set up "buffer zones" around abortion clinics in the Netherlands. No anti-abortion protesters should be allowed in these buffer zones, to allow women to enter abortion clinics un-harassed. But a year later, the protests are continuing unabated, and even increasing at some clinics, according to a survey by De Bovengrondse and the Humanistisch Verbond among 11 of the 14 abortion clinics in the Netherlands.
European Doctor Who Prescribes Abortion Pills to U.S. Women Online Sues FDA
September 9, 2019
A European doctor who prescribes abortion pills to American women over the Internet is suing the Food and Drug Administration in an effort to continue providing the medications to patients in the United States.
The lawsuit being filed Monday in federal court in Idaho names several federal officials, including U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.
As access to abortion gets harder in the US, women turn to an online service in the Netherlands
December 17, 2018
By Allison Herrera
(also a podcast)
Marie was 19 when a pregnancy test she took in the bathroom at work came out positive. That was a couple of years ago. Marie, a waitress, thought to herself, "I really can't afford to take care of a child."
It was her second pregnancy and the second time she needed an abortion. Marie decided not to go to a clinic this time, though.
U.S. Abortion Pill Website, Aid Access, Under Investigation by the FDA
A website founder believed she had a loophole to sell abortion-inducing drugs to American women, but the FDA says it is not legal to buy them online.
A new website that allows U.S. women to order abortion-inducing drugs online is under investigation by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The website, Aid Access, has been quietly shipping the drugs from a pharmacy in India to women in the U.S. for the last six months, in response to what the site’s founder said was an overwhelming demand from American women.