Author(s): Billings DL, Moreno C, Ramos C, Gonzlez de Len D, Ramrez R,
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Abstract For the last three decades, government and health institutions have recognised that unsafe abortion is an important social and public health problem in Mexico. Although the Penal Code in every state defines at least one situation in which abortion is legal, access to legal abortion services is restricted for women throughout Mexico. In August 2000, the Mexico City Legislative Assembly reformed the Penal Code to include a wider range of grounds on which abortion is legal and added regulations to ensure access to legal abortion services in cases of rape and forced artificial insemination. The Mexican Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the reforms in January 2002. This paper describes a collaborative project between Ipas Mexico and the Mexico City Department of Health to provide legal abortions in cases of rape and to ensure that comprehensive health services for survivors of sexual violence are available and accessible. It describes a model of care being introduced into 15 public general and maternal-child health hospitals in Mexico City through a programme of multi-disciplinary consciousness-raising workshops and training courses on sexual violence and legal abortion. Few health care providers have had prior training in service provision for survivors of sexual violence or abortion service delivery. Workshop participants showed a high level of willingness to participate in legal abortion services for survivors of sexual violence when and if they are receive solid institutional support.
This article was published in Reprod Health Matters
and referenced in Journal of Womens Health Care