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"I Am Ready and Willing to Provide the Service … Though My Religion Frowns on Abortion"-Ghanaian Midwives' Mixed Attitudes to Abortion Services: A Qualitative Study
Norwegian Univ Sci & Technol, NTNU, Dept Publ Hlth & Nursing, N-7491 Trondheim, Norway.
Ghana Hlth Serv, Publ Hlth Div, Accra, Ghana.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health, International Maternal and Child Health (IMCH). Norwegian Univ Sci & Technol, NTNU, Dept Publ Hlth & Nursing, N-7491 Trondheim, Norway; St Olavs Hosp, Dept Obstet & Gynecol, N-7030 Trondheim, Norway.
2017 (English)In: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, ISSN 1661-7827, E-ISSN 1660-4601, Vol. 14, no 12, article id 1501Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: Unsafe abortion is a major preventable public health problem and contributes to high mortality among women. Ghana has ratified international conventions to prevent unwanted pregnancies and provide safe abortion services, legally authorizing midwives to provide induced abortion services in certain circumstances.

OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to understand midwives' readiness to be involved in legal induced abortions, should the law become less restricted in Ghana.

METHODS: A qualitative study design, with a topic guide for individual in-depth interviews of selected midwives, was adopted. The interviews were tape-recorded and analyzed using content analysis.

RESULTS: Participants emphasized their willingness to reduce maternal mortalities, their experiences of maternal deaths, and their passion for the health of pregnant women. Knowledge of Ghana's abortion law was generally low. Different views were expressed regarding readiness to engage in abortion services. Some expressed it as being sinful and against their religion to assist in abortion care, whilst others felt it was good to save the lives of women.

CONCLUSION: The midwives made it clear that unsafe abortions are common, stigmatizing and contributing to maternal mortality, issues that must be addressed. They made various suggestions to reduce this preventable tragedy.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 14, no 12, article id 1501
Keywords [en]
Ghana, authorization, midwives perception, unsafe abortions
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-336989DOI: 10.3390/ijerph14121501ISI: 000423699400064PubMedID: 29207521OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-336989DiVA, id: diva2:1167891
Available from: 2017-12-19 Created: 2017-12-19 Last updated: 2018-03-15Bibliographically approved

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