Abortion: “Many women feel abandoned”

VThere is a lot of discussion about women terminating their pregnancies. Now affected women and doctors have been interviewed directly as part of the study, with some of the results published this week. Six universities conducted a three-and-a-half-year study entitled “The experiences and experiences of unintentionally pregnant women – advice and support.” Full results, including recommendations for action, will be presented in the fall. In addition to the Social Science Research Institute for Gender in Freiburg, the Free University of Berlin, the University of Ulm and the universities of Fulda, Merseburg and Nordhausen are also involved in the project.

Former Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) initially commissioned a study to examine the psychological consequences of abortion. However, it has not been empirically proven that abortion leads to psychological problems. Instead, on the one hand, it is the psychological problems and family circumstances that existed before pregnancy that burden the victims.

However, institutional problems complicate the situation for unintentionally pregnant women, with 80 percent of women surveyed reporting difficulties in obtaining information and offers of help. Of Germany’s 400 districts, adequate spatial accessibility of care services is not guaranteed in 85. Especially in the south and west of the country, women have to travel more than 40 minutes by car. Women without a car have even longer travel times.

Every fifth woman finds it difficult to pay for an abortion

According to the study, one in five women also have difficulty paying for abortion costs. There is also the problem that doctors rarely post information about abortion services on their websites, although the advertising ban has now been lifted. When women search for information about abortion, they mostly find journalistic articles. Almost 60 percent of respondents encountered difficulties in obtaining information about abortion. To remedy this, doctors and counseling centers have come up with an app and a poster campaign.

Vulnerable groups, such as women who experience violence in their relationships or suffer from psychological problems, also have special needs that are not being met. Unintentionally pregnant women taking medications for psychological problems should seek help especially quickly.

Most doctors call for decriminalization of abortion

According to the information, the situation with providing for victims is affected by the fact that abortion is illegal. If the abortion occurred in the first three months and the victims received counseling, it is exempt from punishment. More than 75 percent of doctors surveyed support the decriminalization of abortion. Again, 43 percent of gynecologists who do not perform abortions can imagine they would do so if barriers were removed.

Doctors are harassed, threatened, reported and attacked when they perform abortions. 65 percent of them have already experienced this stigma. Additionally, not all doctors learn this procedure during training. 88 percent of doctors surveyed called for this procedure to be included in their future training. 98 percent favor mandatory treatment guidelines.

Source: Frantfurter Allgemeine

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