National survey of abortion care providers shows access has improved

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Researchers from UBC’s department of obstetrics and gynaecology recently surveyed 465 healthcare professionals who provided abortion care in Canada in 2019—the first such survey in seven years.

A key development in the time between the two surveys was Canada’s approval of mifepristone—the gold standard abortion pill—in 2015.

Findings from the latest survey show that:

  • Access to abortion in Canada improved between 2012 and 2019.
  • Approval of mifepristone and removal of restrictive regulations around the medication have contributed to this improved access.
  • Canada’s pool of abortion providers has become larger and younger, especially since nurse practitioners were approved in 2017 to administer abortion medications.
  • Abortions are increasingly being provided in primary care and office-based settings, rather than just by specialists or in dedicated facilities.
  • Mifepristone is improving abortion access particularly in rural areas, where medication is used for a higher proportion of abortions (44.4%) than it is in urban areas (25.6%).

Researchers involved in the survey are available for interviews with print, web or broadcast media (audio only). Please contact Erik Rolfsen at UBC Media Relations to make arrangements.