Abortion and maternal mortality in developing countries.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 4th, 2017

The deVeber Institute for Bioethics and Social Research 
415 Oakdale Rd Suite #215 Toronto, ON M3N 1W7 
bioethics@deveber.org  
Tel. 416-256-0555 Fax. 416-256-0611

Press communiqué from the deVeber Institute for Bioethics and Social Research.
Abortion and maternal mortality in developing countries.

Toronto, ON: Prime Minister Trudeau’s recent ear-marking of tens of millions to promote abortion in the developing world is not justified by the evidence about what genuinely promotes women’s health. Contrary to a widespread assumption, statewide abortion practice does not result in improved health for women or children.

Based on official UN statistics, four countries that have banned abortion in the past two decades (Poland, Chile, El Salvador, Nicaragua) have experienced dramatic improvements in maternal and infant health.*

•     In addition, countries where legal abortion has long been unavailable (Ireland, Egypt, Uganda, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Mexico) have done significantly better at maintaining or improving maternal and infant health than neighbouring countries where abortion is legal on request.*

•     The record of the US, the UK, Russia, Hungary, South Africa, India, Cambodia and Nepal, where abortion is legal has been worse than nearby countries where there is legal protection of pregnancy.*

·         Why is this so?

•     Studies show that the keys to reducing maternal mortality include

·                     Skilled attendance at birth

·                     Improved education for women

·                     Emergency obstetric care (including caesarean sections)

·                     Transportation for emergency obstetric care

·                     Community outreach

·                     Improved referral systems

It is clear from the research that countries where abortion is not permitted do a much better job of caring for women and their babies than comparable countries where statewide abortion is practised. The Canadian government could serve women in developing countries far better by providing improved education, skilled attendance at birth and better obstetrical care than by trying to pressure these nations into accepting abortion.

*Complications: Abortion's Impact on Women.  Dr Angela Lanfranchi, Ian Gentles, and Elizabeth Ring-Cassidy. Published in 2013.
(Analysis of over 650 peer-reviewed international studies.)  

About The deVeber Institute: The deVeber Institute for Bioethics and Social Research conducts and disseminates research on topics connected to human life in its biological, social and ethical dimensions. These topics are selected for study depending on emerging medical, technological and social developments. 

For more information on this issue, please contact Ian Gentles at:
The deVeber Institute for Bioethics and Social Research 
415 Oakdale Rd Suite #215 Toronto, ON M3N 1W7 
bioethics@deveber.org  
Tel. 416-256-0555 Fax. 416-256-0611