Measuring and reducing abortion-related stigma

Abortion remains a stigmatized behavior, negatively impacting women who seek abortion, providers who offer abortion, and their communities. Abortion stigma is a new and growing area of research, based on a conceptual model first created by Ipas. To operationalize understanding of abortion stigma, Ipas researchers have developed a quantitative scale to measure stigmatizing attitudes, beliefs and actions toward women and men who are associated with abortion. Tested in Ghana and Zambia, the scale has also been applied in other country settings, and will be used to assess the effects of stigma-reduction community interventions as part of research currently underway by Ipas and partners in Uganda and Ghana.