Editorial

Why aren't women getting safe abortions?

Roxanne Jacobs, Nancy Hornsby

Abstract


This editorial frames unsafe abortions as a serious public health concern in South Africa and presents a summary of the main challenges identified in achieving accessible and acceptable reproductive health care services. It highlights some of the complexities around abortions and unwanted pregnancies, and how social  and structural pathologies prevent women from accessing basic reproductive healthcare services should be recognised as a form of structural violence. The choice for an abortion is identified as a subject in need of further investigation and argues that in some instances abortion is as much a choice for women as it is against women. Suggestions are made to specialise reproductive health care service provision, for example, linking to National Health Insurance (NHI) initiative, and to include men as partners in prevention and intervention initiatives.

Authors' affiliations

Roxanne Jacobs, SAMRC-UNISA (South African Medical Research Council-University of South Africa) Violence, Injury and Peace Research Unit, Tygerberg, Cape Town, South Africa

Nancy Hornsby, SAMRC-UNISA (South African Medical Research Council-University of South Africa) Violence, Injury and Peace Research Unit, Tygerberg, Cape Town, South Africa

Full Text

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Keywords

Unsafe abortions; Public health; Reproductive health; Unwanted pregnancies; Conscientious objection; Structural violence; Pathologies; Stigma; NHI

Cite this article

South African Medical Journal 2014;104(12):857-858. DOI:10.7196/SAMJ.9133

Article History

Date submitted: 2014-11-07
Date published: 2014-11-11

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