The Ministry of Health – Manatū Hauora is working in partnership with Te Whatu Ora – Health New Zealand to provide abortion services closer to home, which includes supporting more abortions to be provided in primary and community locations.
Manatū Hauora (the Ministry) has the overall goal of accessible, equitable, and quality abortion services across Aotearoa. A key part of this is increasing the availability of first trimester abortions in primary care and community locations, as this will help reduce the need for people to travel to access abortion services.
Who can provide abortion services
A wider range of registered health practitioners can now provide abortions. This includes doctors, midwives, nurse practitioners and registered nurses.
Registered health practitioners can only perform surgical abortions or prescribe medicines for medical abortions if:
- it is a health service permitted within their scope of practice
- the practitioner holds a current practicing certificate
- the practitioner has the necessary qualifications, skills, competency and resources to provide abortion services in accordance with the Ministry's New Zealand Aotearoa Abortion Clinical Guideline.
Changes that support abortion services in primary and community locations
The Ministry is working with Te Whatu Ora to support primary care practitioners to provide abortion services.
New Zealand Abortion Clinical Guideline to support health practitioners to deliver consistent, quality care
This guideline provides best practice clinical guidance for health professionals on abortion care in the New Zealand Aotearoa context.
The guideline replaces the Interim Standards for Abortion Services and is intended for use by health practitioners who provide or are looking to provide abortion care and cover pre, during and post abortion specific content.
To view the guidelines, visit New Zealand Aotearoa Abortion Clinical Guideline.
Removing community restrictions on subsidised abortion medicines
Medicines for Early Medical Abortion (EMA) are now subsidised via a practitioner supply order (PSO) and direct prescribing to give primary and community-based abortion providers access to these medicines so they can provide EMA services.
Te Whatu Ora is now responsible for funding abortion services in primary care and hospital-based services. For more information, please visit their website.