Country Profile – Thailand

Law related to Abortion :

Criminal law article 305

Brief history of the law :

he abortion law was based on European model (19th century) introduced by European advisor to the King Rama V. Prior to this introduction there was no abortion law.

The last amendment was in 1957 where the article 305 was added. (This article allows PHISICIANS to carry out abortion with the consent of the patient only from “HEALTH” indication and from pregnancy arising from specified sexual crimes) i.e. article 272, 273, 282, 283, 284 in the criminal code law

Short summary of conditions within the law :

To save the life of the woman : Yes

To preserve physical health : Yes

To preserve mental health : Yes

Rape or incest : Yes

Foetal impairment : Yes

Economic or social reasons : No

Available on request : No

Analysis of it being restrictive if at all :

The health care provider, the medical schools, the police and the society as a whole still consider the law being “Restrictive”. Different agency makes different interpretation.

Lately the Thai Medical Council, the Royal Thai College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Department of Health, Ministry of Public Health has redefined the term “HEALTH” to cover MENTAL as well as PHYSICAL aspect.

Practice (Providers trained, willing, enabling) :

The main abortion service providers are private NGO, GP clinics, private hospitals and gynaecologists in private clinics and hospitals. Charges are variable and often exploitative. It is completely unregulated and statistics are unavailable.

The WHRRF is a non profit NGO with the aim of bringing increase access of safe abortion to Thai women through training research and advocacy in collaboration with the Department of Health, Ministry of Public Health and the Royal Thai College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Reproductive Health Perspective Signatory to ICPD, CEDAW :

Yes / No, any conditions.

Yes, no conditions.

Abortion Statistics :

Incomplete statistic reported by the Ministry of Public Health.
Total – NA
1st TM – NA
2nd TM – NA
Safe – NA
Unsafe – NA
married women – NA
unmarried women – NA
adolescents : NASeptic abortions – NA

Public sector :

Abortion services available – Yes in some hospitals
1st Trimester – Yes
2nd Trimester – Yes
Cost; varies – Up to US$ 100

Private sector :

Abortion services available at private sectors
1st Trimester – yes.
2nd Trimester – rarely yes
Cost- varies from US$60 to US$ 500 depending on gestation size.

Methods used :

D&C, EVA, MVA

2nd Trimester mostly with Misoprostol

Provider level allowed for surgical and medical abortion (Ob Gyn, MBBS,Nurses,Other) :

Only Ob Gyn and physicians are permitted by law.

Abortion related morbidity mortality statistics :

300 : 100,000 abortions.

Manufacture and/or availability through import of abortion equipment (MVA syringes, EVA equipment) :

All available no restricted of import.

Manufacture/ import of Mifepristone, Misoprostol :

Misoprostol is imported and registered for non-obstetric. Mifepristone is not licensed.

Facility and provider certification norms in brief :

Both inpatient and ambulatory facilities are adequate.

Information available in national service delivery standards :

N/A

Informal / illegal providers – if present who are they :

They are quacks, traditional birth attendants. Midwife, nurses are not allowed to provider abortion by the law.

Population urban/ rural – Demography of the country, with an analysis of availability of abortion services ratio to population :

N/A

Role of government :

Supportive and amending the medical regulation for termination of pregnancy

Provides adequate funding to run training and service delivery programmes
The Department of Health trains physicians and nurses on “Prevention of Unsafe Abortion Pre and Post Abortion Counseling and Care and Use of MVA” and supply MVA to public health hospitals with inadequate funding.

Role of religion/ religious leaders :

N/A

Local Ob Gyn societies :

Supportive

Current status and potential of research :

N/A