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Access to Abortion under the Heath Exception: A Comparative Analysis in Three Countries.

Access to Abortion under the Heath Exception: A Comparative Analysis in Three Countries Stephanie A. Kung, et al.; Reproductive Health, June 2018

This study identifies factors that contribute to the profound disparity between the application of health exception laws in Great Britain, Colombia and Mexican states with health exception laws for abortion. Health exception laws are found to be used frequently and broadly in Britain, less so in Colombia and only very rarely in the Mexican states, such that women in these states with health exceptions still have little to no access to abortion services. The authors lay out five factors that impact the application of health exception laws in each country: "1) the definition of health, with explicit mention of mental as well as physical health, 2) a strong public health sector that provides abortion services, 3) knowledge of the health exception law, including clear guidelines for physicians, 4) dissemination of information about the health exception law, and 5) a history of court cases that protect women and clarify the health exception law."

To expand access to abortion in countries with the health exception, the authors recommend that laws be brought into accordance with who's definition of "health," which includes mental health. They also see a need for information campaigns, clear and comprehensive guidelines for healthcare providers, strong referral systems and litigation in cases of illegal refusals to provide legal abortion.

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Title Annotation:Reports Worth Reading
Date:Sep 22, 2019
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