Globally, the majority of women who suffer deaths and injuries due to unsafe abortion are at or after 13 weeks of pregnancy. Ensuring women have access to high-quality abortion care at this stage of pregnancy is therefore critical to reducing the harmful impact of unsafe abortion. Women who are poor, young, uneducated, living in remote areas, or victims of sexual violence are most likely to need these services because they’re often unable to overcome the many barriers to getting abortion care earlier in pregnancy. Plus, there will always be a need for abortion at or after 13 weeks to protect the health and lives of women who develop serious medical conditions during pregnancy.
Ipas works to train health-care providers in abortion services at or after 13 weeks in accordance with the World Health Organization’s guidelines on safe abortion care—and we partner with health systems to introduce and expand these life-saving services. We also work with communities and partner organizations to reduce the abortion-related stigma and many other barriers that prevent women and girls from accessing care earlier in pregnancy.
Dr. Meera Thapa Upadhyay, an OB-GYN in Nepal, went through Ipas’s training in abortion at or after 13 weeks. Now she provides care to vulnerable women who are unable to access safe abortion services earlier.
‘Everyone is welcome at my hospital’
Dr. Georgina Díaz Orozco is a doctor and Ipas-trained abortion provider in Guadalajara, Mexico—and one of the few providers in Jalisco state to offer abortion care after the first trimester. “It is very important that people have access to this care,” she says.
Young women in particular are likely to need safe abortion services at or after 13 weeks because they may not realize they are pregnant in the early stages or may be hiding the pregnancy out of fear and shame. –Dr. Alison Edelman, OB/GYN and Ipas senior clinical consultant