Not One Woman Turned Away: Expanding Access to Comprehensive Reproductive Health Care in Côte d'Ivoire

Research has shown that in Côte d’Ivoire and around the world, abortion occurs among women of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds, married or unmarried, and with or without children.

Women making this decision deserve compassionate, high-quality, comprehensive care—a principle affirmed in several national policies. Most women in Côte d’Ivoire, however, don’t have access to legal and safe abortion care. According to new research, more than six out of 10 abortions in Côte d’Ivoire in 2018 were unsafe. Unsafe abortion is a leading contributor to maternal death and disability around the world and is estimated to be responsible for more than one in six pregnancy-related deaths in Western Africa.

By denying women access to comprehensive abortion care and contraception, particularly young and lower-income women, we are turning them away when they are most in need of our compassion and care. Expanding access to the full continuum of sexual and reproductive health care, under the circumstances described in the Maputo Protocol, would allow Côte d’Ivoire to reduce maternal death and disability and invest more successfully in the future of its women and girls, and its future as a nation.

This presentation, « Pas une seule femme refoulée : élargir l’accès à des soins complets de santé reproductive en Côte d’Ivoire » (“Not one woman turned away: expanding access to comprehensive reproductive health care in Côte d’Ivoire”), is a multimedia advocacy tool developed in collaboration with the SAFE ENGAGE task force in Côte d’Ivoire that seeks to build public awareness of causes and consequences of unsafe abortions in Côte d’Ivoire and to increase support for greater access to comprehensive reproductive health services including safe abortion.