2021 is a momentous year for sexual and reproductive health rights in Australia. Despite the decriminalisation of abortion care, abortion access remains a postcode lottery. Without adequate investment in abortion care, we have reached an inevitable point where regional abortion clinics need to close.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic doctors, nurses, midwives, social workers, counsellors and administrators have worked tirelessly to maintain access to abortion care. The pandemic has highlighted and reinforced long term systemic issues of access and equity, particularly for people on temporary visas. …
This week politicians, clinicians, nurses and health advocates will travel to Parliament House in Canberra to discuss women’s health. The RANZCOG women’s health summit is taking place as we mark two years into the ten year National Women’s Health Strategy. The theme of this year’s Summit is ‘Time to Act’.
The National Women’s Health Strategy frames migrant and refugee women as a ‘priority population’, and sexual and reproductive health as the first ‘priority area’. In July the Multicultural Centre for Women’s Health will be publishing a data report on the state of migrant and refugee women’s sexual and reproductive health…
This week at Parliament House in Canberra, we join decision-makers from across Australia who are gathering for the RANZCOG Women’s Health Summit. The theme of this year’s Summit is ‘Time to Act’.
This moment in time is significant. For the first time in over 100 years, any woman or pregnant person in Australia can access abortion without the threat of being criminalised.
In Australia abortion is a common women’s health procedure; almost 1 in 4 women in Australia have had an abortion. Abortion is Category 1 essential healthcare. Yet abortion remains one of the least accessible or equitable healthcare services…
The history of people picketing outside of abortion clinics is well known, almost anachronistic, however, this does not diminish the stress that it causes not only the clients but also the staff who are dedicated to providing an emotionally and physically safe space. People accessing or leaving premises providing abortions should be able to do so freely, and in a manner that protects their safety and wellbeing, and respects their privacy and dignity.
Jackie is a Nurse Unit Manager and has worked in abortion clinics across Australia for around 18 years. She has worked at sexual and reproductive healthcare clinics…
2021 will be a momentous year for sexual and reproductive health rights in Australia.
This will be the first year in over 100 years that every woman or pregnant person can access abortion in Australia without the threat of being criminalised. It is the first time in history that medical abortion via telehealth will be legal in every state and territory of Australia.
Despite this progress, abortion access in Australia is still a postcode lottery.
Today MS Health published data on the number of prescribers (doctors/nurse practitioners) and dispensers (pharmacists) of medical abortion in Australia.* …
This week the South Australian lower house (House of Assembly) is debating the Termination of Pregnancy Bill (the Bill). Two amendments have been proposed that attempt to define and ban sex-selective abortion.
The amendments proposed in the lower house would have consequences for migrant communities and communities of colour in South Australia. Here we outline the key consequences and action required.
Existing barriers to healthcare would be amplified
The Right to Health includes sexual and reproductive health, and enshrines health access as free discrimination or judgement. But rather than addressing discrimination, these amendments are more likely to facilitate it.
South Australia is the only state or territory in Australia where abortion is criminalised. Yet, in the coming days and weeks, there is a chance to rectify this and bring South Australia in line with the rest of the country.
This week the lower house (House of Assembly) is discussing the Termination of Pregnancy Bill (the Bill). Here’s five key facts about existing abortion law and the proposed reforms.
Existing laws criminalise health access and healthcare
The South Australian criminal code currently criminalises people who:
Today is the International Day For The Elimination Of Violence Against Women. In recognition of this, Marie Stopes Australia has launched the second edition of Hidden Forces: a white paper on reproductive coercion in Australia.
Reproductive coercion is behaviour that interferes with the autonomy of a person to make decisions about their reproductive health and is a form of violence. It includes:
‘Reproductive coercion’ is a term that’s often misused in policy, misinterpreted between languages and misunderstood in practice. Reproductive coercion is fast becoming a buzzword. And that needs to stop now.
Reproductive coercion is when a person is restricted from making choices about their own body, sexuality and reproductive healthcare. The opposite of reproductive coercion is reproductive autonomy. Reproductive autonomy is when we have access to information, the knowledge and the agency to make decisions about our own sexual and reproductive health.
Reproductive coercion first emerged in English language publications in the 1960s, when it was used to describe contexts of…
The word unprecedented has been used so frequently over the past four months. Perhaps this is because we have no words for what we have experienced, and very few people in the world would have a point of reference to which they can compare it. In one monumental sense, we are experiencing a global trauma — something that most of us have not experienced in our lifetimes.
When it comes to the impact of COVID-19 on sexual and reproductive health, however, I don’t believe that we can use the term unprecedented. We have seen clients struggle to access healthcare inter…
Marie Stopes Australia is the leading, accredited, national provider for abortion, contraception and vasectomy.