Incidence and styles

  • During 2010–2014, an projected 6.5 million induced abortions happened each 12 months in Latin America plus the Caribbean—up from 4.4 million during 1990–1994.
  • The yearly price of abortion is believed at 44 per 1,000 females of reproductive age (15–44), an increase that is slight 40 per 1,000 in 1990–1994.
  • The local abortion price is approximately 48 per 1,000 for hitched females and 29 per 1,000 for unmarried females. 1
  • At the time of 2010–2014, abortion prices vary across subregions, from 33 per 1,000 ladies in Central America to 48 per 1,000 in south usa to 59 per 1,000 into the Caribbean.
  • The percentage of all of the pregnancies in Latin America in addition to Caribbean closing in abortion increased between 1990–1994 and 2010–2014, from 23% to 32per cent. 1

Appropriate status of abortion

  • Significantly more than 97percent of women of reproductive age in Latin America therefore the Caribbean reside in nations with restrictive abortion rules (in other terms., countries in the 1st four groups in dining dining Table 2). 2
  • Abortion isn’t allowed for almost any explanation in six nations. Nine others enable it nearly solely to truly save the woman’s life, with just some providing restricted exceptions for rape (Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Panama) and fetal that is grave (Chile, Panama and very nearly 1 / 2 of the states of Mexico).
  • Less than 3% of this region’s ladies reside in nations where abortion is broadly legal—that is, allowed either without limitation as to explanation or on socioeconomic grounds. 2

Unsafe abortion as well as its consequences

  • Induced abortion is clinically safe when methods that are WHO-recommended employed by trained people, less safe when only one of these two requirements is met, and least safe whenever neither is met. A lot of women undergo unsafe (i.e., less safe or least safe) procedures that place their wellbeing in danger.
  • During 2010–2014, about one in four abortions in Latin America plus the Caribbean had been safe. The bulk (60per cent) of procedures dropped to the less-safe category.
  • About 760,000 ladies in the spot are addressed annually for problems from unsafe abortion. 3
  • In 2014, at the very least 10% of most maternal fatalities (or 900 deaths) in Latin America together with Caribbean had been from unsafe abortion. 4
  • The most frequent problems from unsafe abortion are incomplete abortion, extortionate loss of blood and infection.
  • Bad and rural women can be the essential more likely to experience an unsafe abortion and serious problems thereof.
  • Postabortion services in the area in many cases are of low quality. Common shortcomings consist of delays in therapy, utilization of improper interventions, inadequate access, and judgmental attitudes among hospital and medical center staff. These factors most likely deter some ladies from acquiring required therapy.
  • The application of misoprostol to cause abortions is growing more prevalent through the entire area and appears to have increased the security of clandestine procedures.
  • From 2005 to 2012, the procedure price of complications from unsafe abortion dropped by one-third, from 7.7 to 5.3 situations per 1,000 ladies of reproductive age. This likely represents a real decline in problems care that is requiring.

Unintended maternity and unmet need

  • At the time of 2017, a lot more than 24 million ladies of reproductive age in Latin America together with Caribbean have actually a need that is unmet contemporary contraception—that is, they would like to avoid a maternity but are either maybe maybe perhaps not exercising contraception or are utilising conventional methods, that are less efficient than contemporary techniques. 5
  • Nearly all women who possess an abortion achieve this simply because they get pregnant if they try not to plan to. At the time of 2010–2014, Latin America and also the Caribbean has the rate that is highest of unintended maternity of any globe region—96 per 1,000 females aged 15–44. Within the subregion associated with Caribbean, the price had been 116 unintended pregnancies per 1,000 ladies.
  • An calculated 14 million unintended pregnancies happen every year in Latin America together with Caribbean; of those, almost half (46%) result in abortion.


  • Programs and policies that improve women’s and men’s understanding of, use of and make use of of contraceptive methods should be implemented to cut back pregnancies—and that is unintended abortions or unplanned births that frequently follow.
  • The supply and quality of postabortion care must be enhanced and expanded to cut back infection and death from unsafe abortion.
  • The causes for appropriate abortion should really be broadened and use of safe abortion solutions enhanced to cut back the amount of clandestine procedures plus the negative effects that often result.
  • Use of household preparation and postabortion care must certanly be prioritized for poor and rural females, who encounter disproportionately high rates of infection and death from unsafe abortion.


1. Unique tabulations of updated data from Sedgh G et al., Abortion incidence between 1990 and 2014: international, local, and levels that are subregional styles, Lancet, 2016, 388(10041):258–267.

2. Unique calculations of information from un, Department of Economic and personal Affairs, Population Division, World population leads: the 2015 modification, 2015; and Center for Reproductive Rights, The world’s abortion laws 2017, no date,

3. Singh S and Maddow-Zimet I, Facility-based treatment plan for medical problems caused by unsafe maternity termination when you look at the developing globe, 2012: overview of proof from 26 nations, BJOG, 2015, doi:10.1111/1471-0528.13552.

4. Unpublished information from Singh S, Darroch JE and Ashford LS, Incorporating It Up: the expense and great things about purchasing Sexual and Reproductive wellness 2014, ny: Guttmacher Institute, 2014.

5. Guttmacher Institute, Adding it: buying contraception and maternal and newborn wellness in Latin America while the Caribbean, Fact Sheet, ny: Guttmacher Institute, 2017.

dining Table 1 supply: Special tabulations of updated data from Sedgh G et al., Abortion incidence between 1990 and 2014: international, local, and levels that are subregional styles, Lancet, 2016, 388(10041):258–267.

Dining Table 2 supply: Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), The global World’s Abortion Laws 2017, ny: CRR, 2017; and Singh S et al., Abortion global 2017: Uneven Progress and Unequal Access, ny: Guttmacher Institute, 2018.

Unless otherwise suggested, information in this fact sheet are available in: Singh S et al., Abortion internationally 2017: Uneven Progress and Unequal Access, nyc: Guttmacher Institute, 2018; special tabulations of updated data from Sedgh G et al., Abortion incidence between 1990 and 2014: international, local, and subregional amounts and styles, Lancet, 2016, 388(10041):258–267; Ganatra B et al., Global, local, and subregional category of abortions by security, 2010–14: quotes from a Bayesian model that is hierarchical Lancet, 2017, 390(10110):2372–2381; and Bearak J et al., Global, local, and subregional styles in unintended maternity and its particular results from 1990 to 2014: quotes from the Bayesian hierarchical model, Lancet worldwide wellness, 2018, 6(4):e380–e389.