Supporting the right to abortion self-care

© Ipas
We are committed to supporting a woman’s right to have an abortion using pills—on her own, when and where she wants—and to pursuing new models of self-care that meet women’s wants and needs.

Abortion self-care is an abortion with pills without a prescription, with or without the involvement of a health provider. Abortion self-care is on the rise globally due to the increasing availability of simple, safe, highly effective medications that meet people’s need for safe abortion on their own terms. Research and evidence show that women can safely and effectively self-manage an abortion with pills when they have accurate information about the dosing regimen and when to seek treatment for complications.

We work to generate new evidence, share knowledge and explore clinical and regulatory questions within this rapidly evolving area so that, ultimately, women have the resources, support and care they need to manage their reproductive lives. We work in communities to train clinical and non-clinical providers who are already supporting women in abortion self-care to use the safest methods. And we tackle legal barriers to abortion self-care, including laws that criminalize it.

How to safely self-manage an abortion with pills

Reliable, evidence-based information that gives women control over their own bodies and reproductive choices.

Illustration of two women looking at pill information on a mobile phone

new resource

Abortion self-care: Values clarification for action and transformation workshop facilitator’s guide

Abortion pills without doctor visits—and through retail pharmacies—now legal in U.S

In recent years, the U.S. government has made two federal regulatory changes to greatly expand access to abortion pills, even as some state laws restrict access.

In January 2023, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (F.D.A.) changed its regulations to allow local drug stores and chain pharmacies to offer abortion pills. Previously, the F.D.A required that only clinics, doctors and some mail-order pharmacies could provide the drug mifepristone, one of two drugs needed for medication abortions.

In December 2021, the F.D.A. decided to permanently allow people to receive abortion pills by mail. The F.D. A. first temporarily lifted its restriction on pills by mail during the COVID-19 pandemic so that people who needed early abortion care didn’t have to risk exposure for the requirement of an in-person doctor visit to obtain pills and sign a form.

Ipas videos on abortion with pills attract almost a million views

Ipas Central America and Mexico (Ipas CAM) created two informational videos in Spanish on how women can safely self-manage an abortion using pills. The unexpected popularity of the videos shows just how badly this information is needed.

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“These women—on their own and without a prescription from a doctor—got misoprostol, and they went home and had a safe abortion.”

An Ipas study in Nigeria provides more evidence that people can safely manage their own abortions.

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Self-managing abortions safely

Vinoj Manning, Executive Director of Ipas Development Foundation in India, writes about Indian women’s use of abortion with pills and how to break down the barriers they face.

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About Us

We work with partners around the world to advance reproductive justice by expanding access to abortion and contraception.

Our Work

The global movement for legal, accessible abortion is growing. Our staff and partners in countries as diverse as Bolivia, Malawi and India are working to ensure all people can access high-quality abortion care.

Where We Work

The global movement for legal, accessible abortion is growing. Our staff and partners in countries as diverse as Bolivia, Malawi and India are working to ensure all people can access high-quality abortion care.

Resources

Our materials are designed to help reproductive health advocates and professionals expand access to high-quality abortion care.

For health professionals

For advocates and decisionmakers

Training resources

For humanitarian settings

For researchers and program implementors