This resource was created by Wellness Within and has been shared with permission.
This resource was posted in September 2022.
Accessing Abortion Across Canada
Abortion in Canada is completely decriminalized. it is health care. It is publicly funded. Access depends on where you live and who is trained to provide care in your area. Abortion is normal, common and safe. This resource provides contact information for providers across the country.
Action Canada 1-888-642-2725
Medication abortion includes two medications: 1mifepristone pill and 4 misoprostol pills. taken 24 hours apart. It can take a few days to work and involves heavy bleeding cramping and expelling the tissue at home. In Canada, primary care providers (GP, NP) are authorized to prescribe Mifepristone. Midwives in Quebec as also are also authorized to prescribe Mifepristone. The medication is publicly funded for people who have a health card. Due to COVID-19, many providers started using telemedicine to provide what is called 'no touch' or 'low touch' abortion- meaning you don't have a physical appointment. just a phone call and you can receive medication at your pharmacy after.
Aspiration abortion in the first trimester is a short procedure: first. the cervix is frozen with regional anesthetic. then dilators are used to open the cervix. and then a small tube is inserted through the cervix into the uterus. and suction is used to remove the tissue. Pain relief is provided. It can be performed by family physicians or obstetrician-gynecologists in either a clinic or a hospital. In the second trimester and beyond. the procedure takes longer.
So much of access depends on the skill set of providers. It is so important that nurses, nurse practitioners, midwives, physicians and pharmacists all train in abortion care and work to the max of our scope. For info on how to become a provider visit http://caps-ccpa.ubc.ca
Abortion is by self-referral. Call 1-833-352-0719. A nurse will do an intake and make arrangements for you to have care as close to home as possible, arrange any bloodwork or ultrasound you may need and provide info about birth control options.
There are four surgical/aspiration abortion sites in NS:
- The abortion clinic in the Dickson building of the VG in downtown Halifax
- South Shore Regional hospital in Bridgewater
- Valley Regional Hospital in Kentville
- Colchester Regional Hospital in Truro.
There are dozens of medication (pill) abortion prescribers across the province, from Sydney to Yarmouth. The 1-833-352-0719 number connects you with one. Medication abortion is available to 9 weeks gestational age. If you are under 9 weeks. whether you choose medication or aspiration abortion depends on your personal preferences and circumstances. The nurses will provide information to make a decision. Aspiration abortion is available to 16 weeks. If you are beyond 16 weeks, the nurses at the 1-833-352-0719 number will help you get care out of province. You can also speak to a counsellor.
Self-refer phone number: 1-844-365-8258
PEI offers comprehensive abortion services up to 12 weeks. Service providers will help arrange care after this timeframe.
Summerside - surgical and medication
Charlottetown - medication
Self-refer phone number: 709-754-3572 to reach the St John's Athena clinic for surgical abortion (to 16 weeks) & medication abortion (to 9 weeks). The Athena staff also travel to Cornerbrook once a month trip to provide care.
The Health Sciences Centre in St John's also provides care, with a referral.
New Brunswick offers surgical services (14 weeks) and medication abortion (9 weeks) through self-referral. Call the numbers below.
- Chaleur Regional Hospital Bathurst: 506-544-4150
- Dr.Georges-L.-Dumont Moncton: 506-869-2770
- Moncton Hospital:1-844-806-9205
Quebec has the most surgical abortion clinics per capita compared to every other province. Second trimester abortion is available in Quebec. Link to 74 abortion sites: https://sante.gouv.qc.ca/repertoire-ressources/avortement/
Ontario does not have a centralized process to connect with abortion providers. Ontario has several sites for later term abortion (18 weeks+). Link to abortion providers in ON. gestational age limits, and contact info: https:!/ww w.arcc-cdac.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/list-abortion-clinics-canada.pdf
Shore centre "Choice Connect" app https://www.shorecentre.ca/ccapp/
Self-refer phone number:1-866-947-1517
- Women's Health Clinic in Winnipeg - provides medication abortion (9 weeks) and surgical procedures up to 16 weeks. Translation services are available.
- Medical and surgical abortions are also provided in Brandon at the Regional health centre in a hospital clinic that operates once a week.
- Winnipeg's Health Science Centre 204-787-1980 offers abortion up to 20 weeks and works closely with the Women's health clinic to coordinate care of patients.
Self-refer phone number:1-800-563-9923.
- Regina Women's Health Centre - surgical care is routinely available up to 19 weeks. Medication induced abortions are available up to 9 weeks.
- There are also surgical services in Saskatoon. up to 12 weeks. A referral is required which Saskatoon Sexual Health can provide: 306-244-7989.
Surgical abortion services are concentrated in Edmonton and Calgary.
Self-refer numbers below:
- YEG services: Women's Health Options clinic 780-484-1124 (to 20 weeks)
- Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton to 24 weeks.
- YYC: Kensington Clinic (up to 20 weeks) 403-283-9117
- Peter Lougheed Centre (beyond 20 weeks) 403-943-5716
BC also has centralized self-referral. Call: Sex Sense line1-800-739-7367 operated by Options for Sexual Health and is staffed Monday to Friday 9am-9pm.
Can also call 1-888-875-3163 anywhere in the province to be connected to the closest abortion care provider. Later term procedures (24 weeks and beyond) provided by the CARE program at BC Women's Hospital.
The Northern Options for Women program of NWT's Health and Social Services Authority covers both NU and NWT.headquartered in Yellowknife. Services available up to 14-20 weeks. Self-refer phone number: 1-888-873-5710
The Opal Clinic located in Whitehorse provides surgical abortion to 15 weeks. 867-393-6635. There are affiliated prescribers of medication abortion for Dawson City and elsewhere in the territory. Yukon also has a special subsidy for people who travel for medication abortion: https://open.yukon.ca/sites/default/files/mt006-mIfe.pdf