Medico-Juris Insight of Abortion in India:The Choice between Conscience & Consciousness
India is a country which constitutes mainly of an ecclesiastical society. India has one of Asia’s most liberal abortion laws under the The Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act of 1971. Abortion has been legal for more than 40 years in India, still, about 3 unsafe abortions take place for every 2 safe procedures here.Unsafe abortions are killing a woman every 2 hours in India.
1) Identify the cause of high rate of unsafe abortion in India despite the liberalization of laws regulating abortion way back in 1971.
2) Discuss the extent of clashes between religious obligations & legal authorization of Indian women regarding decision to abort.
We conducted a prospective cohort study of 1472 women attending Obs & Gynae Out Patients Department in a Govt Health Facility in Aligarh, UP, India. Women of Reproductive age group (15-49 yrs) who underwent at least 1 abortion from Sept 2013 to Feb 2014 were eligible for the study & completed interview twice.
77% of women were unaware of the rights conferred upon them by the MTP Act of 1971. 59% of women had a feeling of sin & guilt within them & underwent unsafe abortion.Financial constraints was found to be a contributory factor.
In a muddled up nation of >1 billion people, just the implementation of progressive laws does not guarantee safe abortion. Unawareness of their rights & the social stigma of being sinful, makes women adopt unsafe methods. There arises a need to inculcate such progressive laws in the minds of its people.
Learning Areas:Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Identify the cause of high rate of unsafe abortion in India despite the liberalization of laws regulating abortion way back in 1971. Discuss the extent of clashes between religious obligations & legal authorization of Indian women regarding decision to abort.
Keyword(s): Abortion, Health Law
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been working as a Registered Medical Practitioner in the area of family planning,also providing safe abortion services under the MTP Act 1971 in India.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.