Scotland abortion numbers fourth-highest ever on record

Scotland abortion numbers fourth-highest ever on record

Abortion statistics released by Public Health Scotland show that the number of abortions carried out in Scotland in 2021 were the fourth-highest number on record.

The release of the abortion statistics follows the Scottish Government’s announcement that it will be making ‘DIY’ home abortion permanently available without completing an in-depth evaluation of the safety of home abortion schemes – which they were due to report back on in autumn 2022 – and despite only 17% of respondents to a national consultation supporting making ‘DIY’ home abortion permanent. 

Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has also recently committed to chairing a summit, run by abortion campaigners, on making it a criminal offence to offer support to women outside abortion clinics.

Official figures showed there were 13,758 abortions carried out in 2021 – the second-highest total since 2008 and a decrease of 138 from 2020, when there were 13,896 abortions.

5,374 (39%) abortions were repeat abortions in 2021, up from 5,056 (36%) in 2020.

184 disability-selective abortions were performed in 2021.