Induced Abortion in India

Saseendran Pallikadavath, University of Southampton
R. William Stones, University of Southampton

Complete birth histories of 90,303 women between 15-49 from the 1998-1999 Indian NFHS were used in the paper. The overall induced abortion ratio was 17.04 per 1,000 pregnancies. The lowest induced abortion ratio was 5.27 per 1,000 pregnancies for first birth order, increased to 25.81 for third birth order and then declined marginally and non-linearly. Education of women was the most important factor that was associated with induced abortion. Having the first and second child late is related to previous induced abortion. Living in rural areas substantially reduced the odds of induced abortion. Nationally, sex of the previous child was not significantly associated with induced abortion. Ratios of induced abortion in India are low in association with a pattern of maternal advantage. Increasing women’s education would have profound implications to induced abortions in India. Timing of intention to conceive rather than sex of the previous child appears to be an important predictor of induced abortion nationally.

  See paper

Presented in Session 32: Abortion