Send to

Choose Destination
Med J Aust. 2009 Jan 19;190(2):69-72.

Considering abortion: a 12-month audit of records of women contacting a Pregnancy Advisory Service.

Author information

Key Centre for Women's Health in Society, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.



To characterise the demographic and psychosocial circumstances of women contacting Victoria's largest public pregnancy advisory service (PAS).


Audit of PAS electronic records for the 12 months from 1 October 2006 to 30 September 2007. De-identified data were extracted from a comprehensive electronic database used for recording consultations.


Summary statistics and measures of association.


During the 12 months, 5462 women contacted PAS; records were created for 3827 women, and data were available in more than 80% of records for 77% (13/17) of items. Over half of the women receiving pregnancy support from PAS (60%) were 18-29 years old; 12% lived outside the metropolitan area; 51% held a health care card, and smaller percentages faced housing, financial, or drug and alcohol problems; 16% reported violence, but 71% described partners as involved and supportive. Most (79%) made contact within 2 weeks of discovering pregnancy, and 72% were referred by a general practitioner. Later gestation at contact was associated with younger age (P < 0.001), having a health care card (P < 0.001), and living outside the metropolitan area (P < 0.001). The most common reasons for seeking abortion were the desire to delay pregnancy (23%) and family completion (18%); 42% already had at least one child. Twenty-three women reported that the pregnancy was the result of rape. Ten per cent had mental health problems, and smaller numbers faced access barriers and had special needs.


This PAS responds to demand from women with diverse social and personal circumstances. Findings provide evidence for policy, prevention and service development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center