NEW SOUTH WALES AUSTRALIA – The bill to decriminalise abortion in NSW has passed its first hurdle

The Reproductive Health Care Reform Bill 2019, a private member’s bill to take abortion out of the NSW criminal code, passed the lower house of the NSW Parliament late at night on 8 August 2019 after three long days of debate and several amendments. MPs voted in favour of the bill 59 to 31, with many cheering and clapping after it was passed. The bill now goes to the upper house. For the history leading … Continued

NSW Australia – Abortion bill due to be debated this week

The Reproductive Health Care Reform Bill, pending in the New South Wales (NSW) parliament, has attracted widespread support. It was due to be debated last week but was delayed to this week after anti-abortion MPs complained that they hadn’t had time to prepare themselves. The bill primarily seeks to remove three sections of the NSW Crimes Act that criminalise “attempting to procure an abortion by administering drugs or using instruments or other means”. If passed, … Continued

AUSTRALIA – Medical termination of pregnancy service delivery in the context of decentralization: social and structural influences

Medical termination of pregnancy (MToP) is a safe and acceptable abortion option. Depending on country context, MToP can be administered by general practitioners and mid-level healthcare providers in the first and second trimesters of pregnancy. Like other high-income countries, a range of social and structural barriers to MToP service provision exist in Australia. To counter some of these barriers, geographic decentralization of MToP was undertaken in rural Victoria, Australia, through training service providers about MToP to increase service delivery opportunities. The aim of this study was to investigate the factors that enabled and challenged the decentralization process.

AUSTRALIA – A reproductive rights framework supporting law reform on termination of pregnancy in the Northern Territory of Australia

Against a background of advocacy and action by academics, health and legal professionals, and members of the public, in 2014 to 2015 we undertook a collaborative project funded by Menzies School of Health Research and Charles Darwin University on women’s health and law in the Northern Territory (NT). We gained research ethics permission to analyse over 5,000 cases of surgical termination of pregnancy, and some of that data is presented here. We undertook a literature review, examined the compliance of the NT legislation with international human rights obligations, and held a forum to discuss local issues viewed through the lens of women’s reproductive health rights. This included consideration of the availability of early termination by the medications, mifepristone and misoprostol. Following the project, we continued to engage in local advocacy which came to fruition with legislative reform in July 2017.

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