Factors Influencing Abortion Decision-Making Processes among Young Women.




Decision-making about if and how to terminate a pregnancy is a dilemma for young women experiencing an unwanted pregnancy. Those women are subject to sociocultural and economic barriers that limit their autonomy and make them vulnerable to pressures that influence or force decisions about abortion.


The objective of this study was to explore the individual, interpersonal and environmental factors behind the abortion decision-making process among young Mozambican women.


A qualitative study was conducted in Maputo and Quelimane. Participants were identified during a cross-sectional survey with women in the reproductive age (15–49). In total, 14 women aged 15 to 24 who had had an abortion participated in in-depth interviews. A thematic analysis was used.


The study found determinants at different levels, including the low degree of autonomy for women, the limited availability of health facilities providing abortion services and a lack of patient-centeredness of health services.


Based on the results of the study, the authors suggest strategies to increase knowledge of abortion rights and services and to improve the quality and accessibility of abortion services in Mozambique.

abortion; decision-making; young women; Maputo; Quelimane

Authors & affiliation: 
Mónica Frederico 1,2,*, Kristien Michielsen 1, Carlos Arnaldo 2 ID and Peter Decat 3 1 International Centre for Reproductive Health (ICRH), Ghent University, 9000 Gent, Belgium; kristien.michielsen@ugent.be 2 Centro de Estudos Africanos, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, C. P. 1993, Maputo, Mozambique; carlos.arnaldo@uem.ac.mz 3 Department of Family Medicine and primary health care, Ghent University, 9000 Gent, Belgium; Peter.decat@ugent.be * Correspondence: monica.frederico@ugent.be or mfrederico45@gmail.com; Tel.: +258-82-435-1370
Staff Members: 
Published In: 
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(2), 329; doi:10.3390/ijerph15020329
Publication date: 
Tuesday, February 13, 2018