Lack of South Auckland abortion services ‘unacceptable’

Local abortion services remain unavailable to people living in much of the sprawling South Auckland area - which has a population of close to 600,000 and encapsulates some of the most deprived suburbs of New Zealand - despite the issue being repeatedly raised for more than 12 years.

21 December 2020
Susan Strongman

People living within the Counties Manukau District Health Board (DHB) catchment who need an abortion must travel to the affluent central Auckland suburb of Greenlane. Experts say this creates an access barrier for South Auckland women.

Financial barriers created by the lack of a local service can include the cost of travel, childcare and taking time off work. For people living in Counties Manukau, where the population is younger, and more deprived than elsewhere in New Zealand, those costs can be significant. The area is also home to a high number of Pacific peoples, of whom 64 percent are 'highly deprived', according to Health Ministry data. The Counties Manukau DHB describes Pacific peoples' engagement with and access to health services when they need them as being "a challenge".


New Zealand: Denied abortion: Woman discovers pregnancy at 4 months, 2 weeks

Denied abortion: Woman discovers pregnancy at 4 months, 2 weeks
15 Oct, 2017
By: Sarah Harris
Reporter, NZ Herald

Erica never wanted children.

Certainly not aged 22, on minimum wage as a waitress, regularly binge-drinking alcohol, and without a partner.

But the Auckland woman discovered when she was 18 weeks along that she was pregnant.

She tried to get an abortion but says she was told it was too late.

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New Zealand: No choice: When a legal abortion is denied

No choice: When a legal abortion is denied
Monday 18th September 2017

The decision to have a child can be life changing. But Kate* says she didn’t have a choice.

A woman who was denied a second trimester abortion through North Shore Hospital says the ordeal was so traumatising, she contemplated suicide.

Kate, a 28-year-old administrator, was 18-weeks and five days pregnant when she was referred by her GP to the Waitematā District Health Board for a second trimester abortion.

But the day after her referral, she says she was called by a social worker who told her doctors were not comfortable with performing a termination after 18 weeks.

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