Abortion is only legal in Bolivia in cases of rape, incest and immediate risk to a woman’s health or life. Consequently, unsafe abortion is the third leading cause of maternal death, and an estimated 185 women undergo clandestine and often unsafe abortions every day. Professionals who could facilitate women’s access to safe abortion when the legal requirements are met often do not have training on the law and end up creating more barriers for women.
Ipas Bolivia works both to improve women’s access to reproductive health care and safe abortion, and to reduce sexual violence. For years Ipas has worked with community advocates and organizations from across Bolivia’s diverse population, which has more than 30 indigenous groups, to support efforts to inform and train communities on the importance of ending unsafe abortion and on sexual and reproductive health and rights. Ipas programs also include training safe abortion providers, as well as partnering with Bolivia’s Ministry of Justice to train law enforcement, judicial and policy professionals on the legal provisions for abortion—and to ensure that women themselves know the legal grounds for accessing abortion care.
Visit Ipas Bolivia’s blog to learn more about their work.