Work Location: Africa

Protecting abortion access in Kenya

Well before the coronavirus crisis hit Kenya, the Ipas Africa Alliance was using the online platform WhatsApp to stay in touch with health professionals who are trained to provide abortion care throughout the country. Now, that communication is more valuable than ever.

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Unsafe abortion deaths are preventable, and men have a huge role to play

Two young reproductive rights champions in Ghana speak out  Samuel Lamptey grew up around women—he has 11 sisters. This experience has helped him understand and empathize with the issues women face, including unwanted pregnancy and unsafe abortion. “We cannot make progress if we don’t understand the issues of women,” he says.   Lamptey and his colleague, Aku Dzifa Amenyedzi, are young reproductive rights champions in Ghana, and both have […]

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Health intermediaries in Kenya support women in abortion self-care

After Fiona*, a university student in Kenya, learned she was unexpectedly pregnant, she became depressed. Her parents are strict, and she was nervous to visit them, afraid that her mother would find out. If she continued the pregnancy, Fiona would likely have to drop out of university. She would experience stigma from becoming pregnant before […]

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‘Photos can speak, by virtue of telling a story’

What do photos of a pineapple, a canoe, and women herding goats have in common? Ipas staff who took part in a recent “Photovoice” project supported by the Abortion and Postabortion Care Consortium (APACC) say what unites the photos is that each sheds light on critical questions about safe abortion care: What prevents women and girls […]

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Kenya restores standards and guidelines for comprehensive reproductive health, including abortion

Earlier this month, Kenya made progress toward advancing women’s and girls’ sexual and reproductive health and rights: The High Court ruled to restore the standards and guidelines for comprehensive reproductive health, including abortion. The S&Gs were originally instated in 2012 but withdrawn the following year. The reinstatement will allow providers to offer safe abortion care […]

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Benin strengthens reproductive health and rights for women and girls

The Benin Government has taken a major step towards advancing the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women and girls. On January 31, the Ministry of Health hosted a national dissemination workshop on the results from the “Strategic Evaluation on unwanted pregnancy, Abortion & Contraception in Benin.”  The evaluation was conducted under the leadership […]

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Legal access to abortion expands in Democratic Republic of Congo

In an historic shift toward greater fulfillment of women’s sexual and reproductive rights in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), women can now legally access abortion under a broader range of conditions—including in cases of sexual assault, rape or incest, and when a continued pregnancy would endanger the mental and physical health of the woman […]

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Midwives are making a difference in this Ghana community

Until just a few years ago, women and girls in the Hobor area of rural Greater Accra in Ghana had no local access to safe abortion care. The nearest services were more than 15 miles away, a distance especially challenging during rainy season. Today, a full range of comprehensive abortion and family planning services is […]

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The crisis of reproductive care in humanitarian settings

An estimated 26 million women and girls of reproductive age live in refugee camps and other crisis settings around the world. They experience increased levels of exploitation, sexual violence and transactional sex, which can lead to unwanted pregnancy. But their access to contraception, safe abortion care and other reproductive health services is often minimal or […]

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A decade of progress providing safe abortion services in Ethiopia

A new Ipas study shows Ethiopia has greatly improved the availability of safe abortion care throughout the country—a significant accomplishment since the abortion law was liberalized in 2005 and a strong testament to the Ministry of Health’s commitment to advancing women’s reproductive health and rights. The new study, A decade of progress providing safe abortion […]

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Is abortion stigma linked to higher incidence of unsafe abortion?

Communities with a high level of abortion-related stigma may also have a higher incidence of unsafe abortion, according to two recent studies in Kenya. One, published in the Annals of Tropical Medicine and Public Health, surveyed 759 women receiving abortion services in private and public health facilities in two counties—one located in a region with […]

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In Malawi, access to safe, legal abortion could lower health system costs

Health complications from unsafe abortion are preventable. Access to safe abortion doesn’t just give women the ability to exercise their rights—it saves lives. And increasing access to safe abortion can also save countries money. In Sub-Saharan Africa, health system costs to treat unsafe abortion complications range from $68 to $76 million per year. Yet health […]

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