Extract The correct measure of the public health burden of a discrete event is its incidence: the annual per capita rate of occurrence of the event of interest in the relevant population group. As we reported, the incidence of induced abortion in Peru is as high as, or higher than, the incidence in Britain and the United States, but in Peru this practice is illegal, performed clandestinely and potentially unsafe. . . .he is probably correct in his assertion that the legal restrictions in Peru result in relatively fewer pregnancies being terminated in that country than in Britain or the United States; that is, there are more unwanted births in Peru. . . The high incidence of induced abortion clearly indicates a high incidence of unwanted pregnancy.
Antonio Bernabé-Ortiz, Peter J White, Cesar P Carcamo, James P Hughes, Marco A Gonzales, Patricia J Garcia, Geoff P Garnett, King K Holmes
Abstract Background: Clandestine induced abortions are a public health problem in many developing countries where access to abortion services is legally restricted. We estimated the prevalence and incidence of, and risk factors for, clandestine induced abortions in a Latin American country. Methods: We conducted a large population-based survey of women aged 18–29 years in 20 cities in Peru. We asked questions about their history of spontaneous and induced abortions, using techniques to encourage disclosure.Interpretation: The incidence of clandestine, potentially unsafe induced abortion in Peru is as high as or higher than the rates in many countries where induced abortion is legal and safe. The provision of contraception and safer- sex education to those who require it needs to be greatly improved and could potentially reduce the rate of induced abortion.