Study documents abortion’s global health threat to women

Geneva, Switzerland, May 31, 2013 / 12:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A new study released during the 66th annual World Health Assembly identified and exposed what it claimed to be the harmful and often overlooked impact that abortion has on women's health.

Decades-long research analysis issued by Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life Global Outreach and National Right to Life Educational Trust Fund makes the case that rather than being a routine medical procedure, abortion is detrimental to the health of women globally.

“The evidence is overwhelming: abortion is dangerous for women,” executive director Scott Fischbach of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life Global Outreach said in a May 22 statement.

The analysis “How Abortion Hurts Women” released during the World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland, examined the harmful side effects of abortion that are often overlooked or even “exacerbated” when performed in developing nations.

“Abortion is by its very nature a violent and damaging procedure,” Fischbach said.

The study shows that women who have undergone abortions – both surgical and non-surgical – in are at greater risk of breast cancer, pre-term birth, infertility and psychological problems than those who have not had abortions.

These risks are increased in areas where the quality of maternal healthcare is lacking, the report shows.

“The incidence of maternal mortality is mainly determined by the quality of maternal health care. Legalization does not improve outcomes, but only increases the number of women subjected to the risks of abortion,” Jeanne Head, R.N., National Right to Life vice-president for international affairs and U.N. representative said in the statement.

Rather than promoting the legalization of abortion worldwide, the group suggested that the World Health Organization adopt measures that “protect women from abortion” while at the same time working to “improve women’s health care.”

The release of the analysis came just before the May 27 close of the World Health Assembly where a resolution passed which placed contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs in the category of “life-saving commodities for women and children,” along with antibiotics and oral rehydration salts.

In the resolution, Member States of the World Health Organization are urged to “improve the quality, supply and use” of said “life-saving commodities” as well as “develop plans to increase demand and facilitate universal access.”

The resolution focused upon the promotion of female condoms, contraceptive implants and emergency contraception. These methods rank among the least popular modern artificial modes of preventing pregnancy, according to a 2009 study by the United Nations.

Implanted contraceptives are a long-acting hormonal device injected under the woman’s skin, halting the woman’s natural cycle of ovulation for up to three years. It must be inserted and removed by a doctor.

Emergency contraceptives have generated controversy for their potential to induce early abortions. While all forms can prevent ovulation, it is not known if these drugs can prevent the embryo from taking root in the mother implanting in the mother’s uterus.

Additionally, certain types of emergency contraception, specifically the drug ulipristal, is nearly chemically identical to the drug used for medical abortions, mifopristal, and is labeled as toxic to fetuses.

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