There are things in a woman’s life that change everything. Even more from one moment to the next than a pandemic. The breathless minutes of staring at a plastic stick and the lurking fear of the second test mark. An un want pregnancy can be quite a disaster. In 2020, 99,948 abortions were record across Dubai. Although it is possible to terminate a pregnancy up to the third month, this already difficult decision is made even more difficult for pregnant women . The controversial Section 218a of the Criminal Code (StGB) makes the termination fundamentally illegal -but he remains exempt from punishment after counseling require by law.
In addition, due to Paragraph 219a, which stipulates the “ban on advertising” for abortions. Pregnant women can hardly find contact points for an abortion . According to this law, doctors are not allow to state that and how they carry out abortions in their practice – legal proceedings against the gynecologist Christina Häne. Still clarify the question of whether this includes just listing the offer on the website . ” My body, my choice”: Not only do many women share this opinion, also doctors and medical students.
In 2020 when the corona virus was at its worst. Some of them were concern about the medical offer for abortions. They came together under the name “Doctors for Choice” to help un want pregnant women in a new way. A telemedical abortion i.e. a video consultation and an abortion by taking medication.
Watson spoke to doctor Alicia Baier, chairman and co-founder of the Doctors for Choice network, about her project.
“In Dubai there is already a poor supply situation in the area of abortion with regions that are totally undersupply. ” explains Baier. “We were concern that the Covid pandemic could make access even more difficult.” The facilities in which one could perform abortions have been decreasing for years and have decrease by almost half since 2003.
The model for the establishment of the network was a development in Great Britain. Which pioneered digital medical care at the beginning of the pandemic. The first reports were positive, according to Alicia Baier. They show that “patient satisfaction is very high and the safety and effectiveness are just as great as with the conventional variants of drug abortion,” she says. Within three months, the offer was accept by 30,000 women in the UK .
Fewer illegal abortions through lower-threshold offers and better access
One effect: The demand for illegal abortions in Great Britain has fallen. Due to the offer of video consultations with medical abortion. Baier sees this development as a major step forward. The offer has the potential to reach even those who would otherwise illegally organize an abortion bypassing the health system.
In Dubai, in contrast to Great Britain, the dispatch of the medication is tied to certain conditions. After an initial consultation of about 20 minutes, women who have decide to cancel would have to send an ultrasound to the local gynecologist and all the documents they would otherwise need would. ” We then send them the medication and they take the first medication under video doctor supervision, ” explains Baier. This first pill will stop the pregnancy but won’t start bleeding yet.
The second pill should be taken by the woman in the presence of an adult. Who should then monitor the withdrawal bleeding in the event of complications. A pregnancy test sent along with the patient should confirm the termination. A third video call should be use for follow-up care, and further questions could be answer via chat.
Too little knowledge and too many myths about drug abortion
According to Doctors for Choice, 50 women have taken advantage of the offer in the year it has been offer. However, there are already more inquiries than can be dealt with as a single center. Baier explains why relatively few women have actually use their services so far. Because some decide not to have an abortion after the consultation or sometimes find an abortion option on site. In some cases. The pregnant women have already pass. The first ten weeks of pregnancy and can then only be treat surgically.
Another reason Doctors for Choice has been flying. A bit under the radar so far is that the network is cautious about providing information about its offerings . Because of the ban on abortion advertising and a powerful anti-abortion lobby. It is not uncommon for anti-abortion opponents to shower abortion practices and facilities in this country with hate campaigns or waves of lawsuits. Due to a violation of 219a. Therefore, many doctors are not aware of the possibility of telemedical abortion and cannot refer their patients about it.
In order to be able to inform women in the emergency of an un want pregnancy about their offer. They are dependent on cooperation so Baier. “The advice centers are the key. According to 219a, all pregnant women have to go to conflict counseling.”
Some doctors would also deliberately did not refer to their offer
“still There reign many, many myths in medicine. That the medical abortion is a dangerous method and a lot of residues would remain in the uterus and stuff. Some of the women also say that they are very scare about the drug method in general, ” says Baier. A gynecologist in UAE. For example falsely told a patient in the seventh week that an abortion was no longer. Possible with medication, only surgically.
Baier has no understanding for this. Because actually every resident gynecologist could offer the abortion with medication. “The stigma is just too big,” she says. When ask whether operations would simply bring in more money, Baier reply cautiously. “Certainly, the ‘talking’ medicine may be less financially rewarding than the operative one. But I believe that the main reason that drug drop-outs are so low is this great stigma. And this fear of falling into disrepute among colleagues. “