Growing numbers of women in desperate financial straits cannot afford abortions, say women’s health advocates who are running out of funds to help them. They say women on Centrelink benefits cannot afford fees at private abortion clinics, and public hospitals must play a bigger role in providing a free service.
”Women who are really poor are finding it hard to get bulk-billed abortion services,” said Denele Crozier, the executive officer of Women’s Health NSW, the peak body for women’s community health centres. ”Either public hospitals must provide an abortion service or governments must further subsidise poor women to use the free-standing clinics.”
Women receive a Medicare rebate for terminations but out-of-pocket costs are high for many.