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Pregnancy awareness and confirmation among adolescents seeking abortion‐related care: a comparative mixed methods study in Ethiopia, Malawi and Zambia

Strong, Joe ORCID: 0000-0001-8626-4020, Coast, Ernestina ORCID: 0000-0002-8703-307X, Chiweshe, Malvern, Fetters, Tamara, Griffin, Risa, Tembo, L and Getachew, Abraham (2020) Pregnancy awareness and confirmation among adolescents seeking abortion‐related care: a comparative mixed methods study in Ethiopia, Malawi and Zambia. In: 2020 British Society for Population Studies Annual Conference, 2020-09-15 - 2020-09-16.

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Abstract

This paper describes and explores trends in pregnancy awareness and confirmation in adolescents seeking abortion-related care. It comprises a cross-national comparison of interviews and quantitative data with 10-19-year-olds (n=343) from two health facilities in each of three countries, purposively selected for a range of politico-legal contexts: Ethiopia, Malawi and Zambia. Preliminary results illustrate the complexities and pluralities of factors that lead to adolescents becoming aware of their pregnancies, particularly unexpected pregnancies, as well as the differences between awareness factors and the method of confirmation. Both individual and institutional barriers, such as delay in linking sexual intercourse, symptoms and pregnancy, as well as obstacles to obtaining urinary tests, resulted in many adolescents seeking abortions after the first trimester. The results indicate that, particularly when unexpected / unintended, timely awareness and confirmation of pregnancies was determined by chance and circumstance, e.g. availability of resources, support and information. The time sensitivity of abortion, regarding method options available, legal framework and changes in pregnancy acceptability, make the findings in this paper important in the necessary promotion of a focus on pregnancy awareness and confirmation as a critical determinant of future decisions along the pathway of abortion-related care-seeking.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Official URL: https://www.lse.ac.uk/social-policy/research/Resea...
Additional Information: © 2020 The Authors
Divisions: International Development
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
Date Deposited: 06 Jan 2022 12:36
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2022 00:09
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/113338

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