PRESS RELEASE | Telemedicine provides an alternative way to access abortions in Italy during COVID-19

For immediate release 17/12/2021

New research conducted with Women on Web data demonstrates a demand for telemedicine abortions in Italy and shows a drastic increase in individuals seeking remote abortion care during the national lock-downs in 2020.

Women on Web is an international telemedicine abortion service that has provided medical abortions for 16 years in areas where access to abortions is restricted. During 2020, Women on Web supported hundreds of Italian women seeking for abortion care.

In Italy, the right to access abortions is protected under Law 194, but in reality many women and pregnant people encounter access barriers due to conscientious objectors among Italian physicians. The existing gaps in abortion access have worsened during the pandemic as abortion in Italy must take place in hospitals that have been overwhelmed by the pandemic and de-prioritized abortion services.

Women on Web's recent research analyzed the requests to its telemedicine service between March 1st 2019 and November 30th 2020. The study sought to understand the reasons of women contacting the service and the impact that the pandemic has had on these requests.

The study is available for open access here

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