4288.0: Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 4:45 PM

Abstract #14761

Barriers to Early Abortion in the US

Janie Benson, MPH1, Ann Gerhardt, MPH2, Lynne Randall, MPH3, Susan Dudley, PhD2, and Kathryn Clark, MS4. (1) Division of Health Systems Research, Ipas, 300 Market Street, Suite 200, Chapel Hill, NC 27516, 919-960-5594, bensonj@ipas.org, (2) National Abortion Federation, (3) CAPS (Consortium of Planned Parenthood Abortion Providers) Project, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, (4) Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research and Department of Maternal and Child Health, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill

Technological advances such as medical abortion, early pregnancy tests, and vaginal ultrasound, along with research showing that early abortion (< 6-7 weeks LMP) is safe and effective, are changing medical practice. Some clinics currently offer early medical and/or surgical abortions but widespread expansion of earlier services is happening slowly.

This paper presents the results of a study designed to identify the barriers that have precluded some sites from adoption of early services, as well as to explain the factors that have prompted others to expand their services to include early abortion. The study is a project of the National Abortion Federation (NAF), the PPFA/CAPS (Consortium of Planned Parenthood Abortion Providers) Project, and Ipas, a non-profit reproductive health organization that focuses on abortion issues worldwide.

Data collection involved telephone interviews with representatives of 120 abortion providers, including all 75 PPFA affiliates that offer abortion services and a random sample of 45 NAF providers. Sites currently offering early medical or surgical services were asked about their reasons for deciding to offer services, as well as the advantages and challenges experienced in implementation. Those facilities not currently providing these services were surveyed about their decision not to include early abortion, and any future plans they may have to do so.

The findings will be useful to reproductive health providers and clinic managers who are considering expansion of services in their facilities, as well as by NAF and PPFA/CAPS as they develop strategies for implementing early services where they are not now available.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, participants will be able to: 1. Describe barriers to the provision of early abortion services; and 2. Explain factors that contribute to the decision to adopt early services

Keywords: Abortion, Reproductive Health Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: PPFA/CAPS (Consortium of Planned Parenthood Abortion Providers) Project; NAF (National Abortion Federation); Ipas
I have a significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.
Relationship: Ms. Benson is an employee of Ipas, a non-profit international reproductive health organization. Ipas provides technical assistance in training, service delivery, research, and policy, and produces and distributes manual vacuum aspiration instruments.

The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA