Sexual and reproductive health

Safe and unsafe induced abortion - Global and regional levels in 2008, and trends during 1995–2008

Information sheet

UNDP/UNFPA/WHO/World Bank Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction (HRP)

Front cover

Publication details

Number of pages: 8
Publication date: 2012
Languages: English
WHO reference number: WHO/RHR/12.02


When women want to cease or space childbearing and do not use contraception or use it ineffectively or experience nonconsensual sex, unintended pregnancies occur: some are terminated by induced abortions while others result in unwanted births. Where abortion laws are restricted or safe abortion services are not widely accessible or are of poor quality, women may attempt to self-induce an abortion or resort to unskilled providers, risking serious consequences to their health and well-being.