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France expands access to abortion

As of April 1 the French state will reimburse 100 percent of the cost of abortions while teenage girls will be offered free and anonymous contraception.

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The French state will reimburse 100 percent of the cost of abortions beginning April 1, while girls aged between 15 and 18 will be offered access to free and anonymous birth control.

The change comes as a law approved in late 2012 comes into force.

Until now, French women over 18 could only receive up to 80 percent of the cost of the procedure, which can run up to 450 euros.

There are around 12,000 such procedures a year in France.

The move to full reimbursement, which was one of French President François Hollande’s 2012 campaign promises and is part of the 2013 social security budget, is designed to improve women’s access to abortions.

And by coupling it with free contraception for younger girls and women, France hopes to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies, and thus the number of abortions.

 

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