“Women on Web” started providing counselling and medical abortion services in Lithuania

In spring 2021, “Women on Web” started providing counselling and medical abortion services in Lithuania, while our website was translated to the Lithuanian language.

We are excited to learn that medical abortion will soon be officially available in Lithuania and congratulate the Ministry of Health on the draft law to legalise the procedure!

Currently, only surgical abortion is available on demand for pregnancies of up to 12 weeks in the country. Termination of a pregnancy of more than 12 weeks is allowed when it threatens the woman's life and health. Abortion in Lithuania is still regulated by a ministerial decree issued in 1994.

We would like to remind that the World Health Organisation (WHO) considers medical abortion a safe and effective procedure and recommends it for early pregnancies. “Mifepristone” and “Misoprostol”, which are used for medical abortion, have been on the WHO’s lists of essential medicines since 2005. The most recent WHO abortion care guideline states that medical abortion makes the procedure more accessible, private, and convenient. The guideline also recommends telemedicine, where medical professionals provide remote abortion supervision and counselling, as an alternative to in-person support. Recent studies have shown that telemedical abortion is also effective, safe, acceptable, and improves access to care.

Moreover, General Comment No. 22 (2016) of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights stresses that States parties – Lithuania is one of them – must ensure access to safe abortion and quality post-abortion care, and to ensure that abortion is accessible.

The need for medical abortion in Lithuania is also reflected in our data. In 2021, “Women on Web” received 134 help requests and responded to almost 400 messages from Lithuania. The most common reasons for using “Women on Web” were legal restrictions, seeking privacy, and the absence of medical abortion in the country. Also, people who seek to terminate their pregnancies in Lithuania often face a judgmental attitude from medical professionals, whereas medical abortion can be carried out at home or in another private space and requires less medical supervision.

We closely follow news from Lithuania and look forward to the day when our services are no longer needed in the country!

Till then, we remain committed to answering your questions at info@womenonweb.org. If you need a medical abortion, please contact us here. In the case of Lithuania, we request a €70-90 donation. However, please get in touch even if you face financial difficulties. We will find a solution together.