Monday 12 July 2010

Myth-Busting Monday: If everyone used contraception, would there still be a need for abortion?

Every Monday EFC busts myths and take names, cutting through the misinformation, disinformation, and straight up nonsense to bring you the facts.

There are many methods of contraception, and most of them are reliant on the woman or her partner to use them consistently and correctly. Long Acting Reversible Contraceptive (LARC) methods can be fitted for the woman by a doctor or nurse and do not rely on perfect usage.  These methods have an extremely high success rate in preventing pregnancy. Even so, all contraceptive methods occasionally fail (LARC fails less than others; see James Trussell’s presentation on why contraception fails). In fact, if every single contraception user worldwide used their chosen contraceptive methods perfectly, there would still be hundreds of thousands of unintended pregnancies each year around the world.

Despite the existence of effective methods of contraception, some women do not always find it easy to seek contraceptive care or advice or may find it hard to reach their local family planning clinic; others may find it hard to get support from their partners to use contraception; others may have the intention of using condoms or other barrier methods each time they have sex, but find it hard to remember to do so.  Sexual assault continues to be a massive problem in the UK and internationally, and can lead to unintended pregnancy. For many reasons the existence of contraception per se does not remove the need for the safety net of abortion for those women who haven’t successfully protected themselves against unwanted pregnancy.

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