FIGO society survey: acceptance and use of new ethical guidelines regarding induced abortion for non-medical reasons
Rogo Khama O.
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OBJECTIVE: FIGO's Ethical guidelines regarding induced abortion for non-medical reasons offer guidance concerning women's right to safe abortion services and the medical community's attendant responsibilities. Ipas surveyed FIGO constituent societies to determine their agreement with the Guidelines' recommendations and their readiness to use them to improve and expand services. METHOD: Ten months after the Guidelines publication in IJGO, a ten-item questionnaire was mailed to 283 Officers of the 101 FIGO societies, with follow-up prompts to non-respondents. RESULTS: Officers of 59 societies responded, divided evenly between those in countries whose laws permit induced abortion on non-medical grounds and those in countries prohibiting it. In 'permitting' countries all responding societies supported the recommendations, and 85% said they should adopt them or had already done so. Two-thirds in 'prohibiting' countries supported the recommendations, but less than half believed their FIGO society, or their government, should adopt them. However, 20% in the 'prohibiting' countries had adopted or formally considered the recommendations and 23% had already brought them to the attention of their governments. CONCLUSION: The FIGO constituent societies showed overall strong support for the recommendations, but efforts need to be made to encourage those in 'prohibiting' countries to promote implementation of the recommendations.