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Harm reduction is an evidence-based public health and human rights framework that prioritizes strategies to reduce harm and preserve health in situations where policies and practices prohibit, stigmatize and drive common human activities underground. The best-known application of a harm reduction model is in the field of HIV, where needle exchange programs and safe injection centers have been shown to be highly effective in preventing HIV/sexually transmitted infection. We propose that promoting the use of misoprostol for abortion using a harm reduction approach could dramatically increase access to safer abortions. The principles of harm reduction — neutrality, humanism and pragmatism — present a conceptual framework for making misoprostol information and care available directly to women and make the case for why it is imperative that we do so.

Authors: Hyman, Alyson, Alexandra Teixeira, Kelly Blanchard, Daniel Grossman, Francine Coeytaux
Year: 2013

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

Ipas Sustainable Abortion Care

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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.

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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.

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