Area of Law: Health Law
Answer # 699
Abortion: Access and rightsRegion: Ontario Answer # 699
Abortion services available in Ontario
Abortion is legal in Canada. In Ontario, a woman with a valid Ontario health card can normally access abortion services at either a hospital or a clinic. Generally, there is no cost for an abortion, although in some cases there may be a small administrative fee.
Is there a time limit on how late an abortion can happen?
Although access to abortion is not limited by law, hospitals and clinics may establish their own policies and practices that limit when they will provide abortion services. Most abortions are performed within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. In some cases, physicians may perform abortions up to the 20th week, but rarely beyond 20 weeks, unless the woman’s health is at risk.
Whose consent is required for an abortion
All health care treatment, including abortion, requires the consent of the patient. Contrary to what some people may think, you do not have to have the consent of your partner to have an abortion. If you are 16 years or older, you do not require parental consent. If you are under 16 years of age and your doctor believes that you are mentally capable of understanding what an abortion is and the consequences of making the decision to have an abortion, you do not require parental consent. If your doctor does not think that you understand and appreciate the consequences of having an abortion, then you will need consent from your guardian, parent, or other relative who is an adult.
For more information about abortion and abortion services, visit the National Abortion Federation Canada website, or contact a local Health Unit.
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