38,779 Induced Abortions in Liberia, Study Indicates- Latest Liberian News

The Liberia National Abortion Study reports have revealed that about 38,779 induced abortions occurred in Liberia in 2021, rendering an induced abortion rate of 30.7 per 1,000 women of reproductive age, and an induced abortion ratio of 229 abortions per 1,000 live births.

The report was launched by the Ministry of Health (MoH) in collaboration with the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) along with the African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC) and Guttmacher launched findings of abortion incidence and severity of complications study in Liberia.

It focuses on measuring abortion, the magnitude of complication, cost, and quality of post-abortion and was conducted across all regions and counties in Liberia between September 2021 – March 2022.

Receiving and launching the first incidence of abortion and severity of complications study report, deputy minister and chief medical officer of Liberia Dr. Francis N. Kateh said the country has been struggling with the lack of scientific abortion records because of its illegal status, causing most abortions to be done at home. He said, with the latest finding it will help the Ministry and partners to plan properly.

Also speaking during the handing over and launch of the report, Clinton Health Access Initiative country director (CHAI) Dr. Moses Massaquoi discourage unsafe abortion across the country.

Dr. Massaqwuoi said unsafe abortion is among the top causes of maternal mortalities and other sicknesses and it drains health system resources.

Dr. Massaquoi noted, there is limited scientific information available on the context in which women seek an unsafe abortion, the magnitude of the unsafe abortion problem, and resulting in complications from such practice.

Abortion is acceptable only under limited circumstances to save the life of a woman to preserve her physical and mental health in the case of rape, incest including other felonious fetal impairment in Liberia.

This is the first national study on the incidence of induced abortion in Liberia and its findings will be crucial for effective planning, budgeting, and implementation of sexual and reproductive health interventions.

In the report, the study recommends advanced legal and policy reforms that address the causes of unsafe abortion and unwanted pregnancies and also provide the enabling environment for access to Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) services for all women and girls of reproductive age.

It also recommends the expansion of access to quality post-abortion care, including post-abortion contraception counseling and method provision at all health facility levels to strengthen the capacity of lower-level health facilities and mid-level care providers to provide quality care and community education and awareness on the dangers of unsafe abortion, the existing legal status of abortion and current access point of family planning methods in the country.

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