A population-based study on correlates of abortion in India (1990-2006)

Jeetender Yadav, Ashish Kumar Yadav, Garima Sharma, Jiten Kumar Singh


Background: Every two hours in India, a woman dies from an unsafe abortion. Each year, 19 million to 20 million women risk their   lives to undergo unsafe abortions, conducted in unsanitary conditions by unqualified practitioners or practitioners who resort to traditional but rudimentary means. This study depicts the scenario, traces the changes in abortion and determines the factors associated with abortion in India, during last one and half decade (1990-2006).

Methods: Data from three rounds of the National Family Health Survey (1992–93 NFHS-1, 1998–99 NFHS-2, 2005–06 NFHS-3) India were analyzed. To identify the scenario, traces the changes and determine the factors associated with abortion, bivaraite and multivariate (both separate and pooled) analyses were performed.

Results: Findings from this study highlighted that the women current age, women age at marriage, sex composition of living children, educational status, mass media exposure and place of residence emerged as significant factors affecting the abortion. Controlling for a set of socioeconomic and demographic factors, experience abortion by women was more (Crude OR=2.11 95% CI=2.04-2.19), (AOR=1.06 95% CI=1.01-1.10) during 1996-99 and (Crude OR=1.07 95% CI=1.03-1.12), (AOR=1.20 95% CI=1.15-1.26) during 2003-06, respectively as compared to period 1992-1993.

Conclusions: There is a need for more in-depth qualitative studies at the regional level to better understand the determinants and consequences of this complex and sensitive issue in India. Programs should focus more on the availability and accessibility of contraceptives among women to elude the reproductive health consequences of induced abortion.


Abortion, Maternal care, NFHS

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