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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics
Title Female autonomy and reported abortion-seeking in Ghana, West Africa
Volume 126
Issue 3
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2014
Page numbers 217-222
URL https://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/handle/2027.42/135183/ijgo217.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y
Objective: To investigate factors associated with self-reported pregnancy termination in Ghana and thereby appreciate
the correlates of abortion-seeking in order to understand safe abortion care provision.
Methods: In a retrospective study, data from the Ghana 2008 Demographic and Health Survey were used to investigate
factors associated with self-reported pregnancy termination. Variables on an individual and household
level were examined by both bivariate analyses and multivariate logistic regression. A five-point autonomy
scale was created to explore the role of female autonomy in reported abortion-seeking behavior.
Results: Among 4916 women included in the survey, 791 (16.1%) reported having an abortion. Factors associated
with abortion-seeking included being older, having attended school, and living in an urban versus a rural area.
When entered into a logistic regression model with demographic control variables, every step up the autonomy
scale (i.e. increasing autonomy) was associated with a 14.0% increased likelihood of reporting the termination of
a pregnancy (P b 0.05).
Conclusion: Although health system barriers might play a role in preventing women from seeking safe abortion
services, autonomy on an individual level is also important and needs to be addressed if women are to be
empowered to seek safe abortion services

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