Abortion Laws in India
Is abortion legal in India?
Abortion has been legal in India since 1971 according to the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act. Abortion in India is legal up to 24 weeks of pregnancy. Pregnancies not exceeding 12 weeks can be terminated based on a single opinion formed in good faith. In case of pregnancies exceeding 12 weeks but less than 24 weeks, termination needs opinion of two doctors under specific conditions and situations, which are broadly defined as:
- The continuance of the pregnancy would involve a risk to the life of the pregnant woman or of grave injury of physical or mental health
- There is a substantial risk that if the child were born, it would suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities as to be seriously handicapped
What are the different abortion services available in India?
India provides both medical as well as surgical abortion services. For medical abortion (MA), a combination of two drugs, Mifepristone and Misoprostol is used. Surgical procedures that are available are Manual Vacuum Aspiration (MVA) and Dilation and Evacuation (D&E).
Who can perform abortion services in India?
Only obstetrician-gynecologists and other doctors who have undergone a government-approved training to be certified can provide legal abortion services. All government or public health facilities can provide abortion as long as the provider is certified in abortion services. Whereas abortion services can be provided in private health facilities if doctor is trained at a hospital or training canter approved by the government and has assisted in 25 cases of MTP out of which 5 cases have been done independently.
What is the cost of an abortion in India?
At government or public health facilities in India, all abortion services are free. In the private sector, services can range from Indian Rs. 1000 to 5000 (approx. USD 25 to 75).
Can I buy abortion pills at a pharmacy in India?
Pharmacists are allowed to dispense abortion pills against a valid prescription by a provider.
Who can I contact for additional abortion information or support in India?
- DKT/Janani India Tele-Helpline Centre: +1800200300-6
- Marie Stopes India: +911149840000/+914030680659
- Marjee India Hotline: +9075764763 (Monday to Friday | 10 AM to 6 PM)
- Gynopedia India
- Asia Safe Abortion Partnership
- Global Abortion Policies Database for India
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