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Surgical abortions will be available on P.E.I. later this month

FILE PHOTO: Prince County Hospital
FILE PHOTO: Prince County Hospital

SUMMERSIDE, P.E.I. — Prince Edward Island is on the cusp of ending its dubious distinction as the only province in Canada not offering abortion services.

Health P.E.I. announced Tuesday that Island women will be able to access surgical abortions by the end of the month at Prince County Hospital in Summerside.

Women can start calling the Women’s Wellness Program toll-free at 1-844-365-8258 for information or to book an appointment.

Surgical abortions will be performed on women in their first 12 weeks of pregnancy only. Follow-up treatment will also be available.

“This initial offering of hospital-based services is the first step to providing Island women with safe, confidential, and supportive reproductive and sexual health services,’’ says Kathy Jones, director of public health, women’s wellness and children’s developmental services.

The other services soon to be offered include birth control counselling and options, including intrauterine device insertion and counselling for pregnancy options.

Last year, the P.E.I. government made the historic decision to extend abortion services in the province.

In September 2016, the government announced a new Women’s Wellness Centre and Program for the Island.

Health P.E.I. noted in its release Tuesday that other hospital-based services will be added over the coming months, including first-trimester bleeding care; prenatal care for women without a primary care provider; menopause care; and information, navigation and coordination of fertility services.

Until the new Women’s Wellness Centre is constructed, hospital-based services will be delivered at a temporary location within Prince County Hospital. Construction of the new centre is expected to be completed in 18 months.

To learn more about the Women’s Wellness Program, including abortion services, visit www.healthpei.ca/womenswellness.

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