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J Reprod Med. 1999 May;44(5):428-32.

Induced abortion. Physician training and practice patterns.

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Central Maine Clinical Associates, Lewiston, USA.



To examine the relationship between training in induced abortion during residency and subsequent practice patterns in providing abortion services.


An anonymous survey of all obstetrician-gynecologists with admitting privileges at a tertiary care hospital in New England was conducted. Physicians were asked about their residency training experience in performing abortions, current practices and attitudes toward abortion.


Ninety-two of 110 physicians (84%) completed the questionnaire. Six physicians who received training after residency and two with incomplete information were excluded from the analysis. Forty-four respondents received training specifically in first-trimester abortion, and 42 did not. Physicians who received training were more likely to provide abortion services (49% vs. 21%, P = .01), to ask patients about their plans for continuing pregnancy (65% vs. 41%, P = .007) and to support medical assistance funding for abortion (84% vs. 45%, P = .001) than were physicians who did not receive training during residency. Beliefs were significantly associated with current practice, even after controlling for differences in residency training in abortion.


Differences in practice patterns exist between physicians who receive abortion training and those who do not. Practice patterns are associated with beliefs even after controlling for variations in training.

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