STATE SERVICES ARE FREE

ACCORDING to the South African Family Practice journal, misoprostol (also called cytotec) is widely used in developing countries because it can be administered orally and is inexpensive.

ACCORDING to the South African Family Practice journal, misoprostol (also called cytotec) is widely used in developing countries because it can be administered orally and is inexpensive.

Over the past decade, several safe and effective medical abortion regimens have been developed.

In conjunction with other drugs, misoprostol is widely prescribed for the prevention and treatment of gastric ulcers that may result from the long-term use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

It is currently available in more than 60 countries worldwide.

Misoprostol has been used widely to induce illegal abortions. As a result, in South Africa it has been banned from being sold over the counter.

Abortion was legalised in South Africa on February 1 1997.

The World Health Organisation says 68000 women die annually because of unsafe abortions.

Maries Stopes clinic at Ghandi Square, Johannesburg, charges as follows for abortion:

l R1400 - surgical abortion, six weeks to three months.

l R1800 for four months.

l R2570 for five months.

The state performs abortions at provincial health facilities. The services are free but can only be performed in the first 12 weeks of the pregnancy.

After that you have to have a compelling medical reason - such as when a woman's life is in danger.

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