Can a minor girl get an abortion in India?

Things that minors should keep in mind : 

A minor girl is someone who is below the age of 18 years old.

Under the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act 1971, a minor girl needs written permission from her guardian to get an abortion

The MTP Act defines guardian as a person “having the care” of the minor person. Thus an adult, someone over 18 years of age who accompanies a minor girl to a clinic would be De facto guardian and could consent to an abortion on the girl’s behalf.

Things that providers should keep in mind: 

If the girl’s age and/or marital status are uncertain, the providers can proceed with the termination of pregnancy in line with the provisions of the MTP Act after maintaining complete and detailed records of the case.

It is advised to report the pregnancy as per the legal requirement under  Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act 2012 and allow the authorities to decide what actions to take.

 

Things you should know before use a pregnancy test kit

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It is a known fact that no method of birth control is absolutely foolproof, and all it takes for someone to get pregnant is a single sperm! With that given, if you are someone who is sexually active, even a delay of a day or two in the arrival of your period can make you panic. The first thought one would have is probably that of a pregnancy. Whether or not you are hoping for it, you would definitely want to know what is going on with your body. And that is exactly what an at-home pregnancy test kit was invented for!

Here are a few things you should know about pregnancy test kits before you use one-

1) How they work

All at-home pregnancy test kits work by detecting a hormone called human Chorionic Gonadotropin (hCG) in the urine. This hormone is produced by the developing placenta after fertilization takes place. The fiber strip of the test is coated with a chemical that reacts with hCG to change colour and produce result. Here are a few tips that you should keep in mind while using hCG kits:

  • An hCG kit should be stored between 4° C to 25° C for maintaining shelf life. Preferably, it should be refrigerated before use.
  • It should be brought to room temperature before use.
  • Some brands claim higher accuracy than the others, which might not be necessarily true. What does affect the quality of the pregnancy test kit is the way it is stored. The result will not be accurate if the kit is faulty, damaged or expired. Thus, it is advised that you buy the kits from a store that actively sells and restocks pregnancy test kits.
  • Avoid any form of liquid intake before testing for pregnancy.

2) There is a slight chance of inaccuracy

Most pregnancy test kits claim to be about 99% accurate. However, under certain conditions, the results might be imprecise. There can be two case scenarios when it comes to inaccurate results; it could either be a false positive or a false negative. The latter out of these two is more likely to happen. For example, if you are testing too early in your pregnancy, the kit might say ‘negative’ even if you actually are pregnant. This might happen due to the fact that that your hCG levels are not high enough to be detected. Also, consumption of excessive amounts of fluid before testing may dilute the urine, producing inexact result. To avoid these kinds of situations, it is advised that you take the test a day or two after the missed period, since the hCG levels would have risen to a detectable point.

False positives occur very rarely. These might occur in the case of ‘biochemical pregnancy’ wherein the chemical imbalance in the body causes the hCG levels to rise and give the false impression of a pregnancy. Similarly, ‘ovarian tumour’ can cause the secretion of hCG which can be the reason behind a false positive test result. In some cases, false positives can occur in the case of early miscarriage of pregnancy wherein traces of hCG would be left behind but there would be no living embryo. Consumption of fertility drugs which induce higher levels of hCG also might cause false positive results.

To get accurate results, one has to take multiple tests(preferably 2-5) at different time intervals. If your test turns out to be negative but you still haven’t received your period, you might have to take another test a week later. Although the test can be taken during any time of the day, it is said that the best time to test is early morning as the urine is more concentrated and hormones levels will be higher, and thus sensitive to detection.

3) There are different types of pregnancy test kits

There are a few variations of pregnancy test kits available in the market. These include-

  • Standard kits: These are the ones that show results by changing color of the strip.
  • Digital kits: These pregnancy test kits have a screen on which printed letters that either read out ‘pregnant’ or ‘not pregnant’ appear. Some of them use other symbols which are usually mentioned on the instructions leaflet. Digital tests are more expensive than standard kits but are more accurate and facilitate the clear reading of results which the standard kits sometimes fail to provide one with.

Variations also exist in the way urine is collected by the kit. While the most common type of pregnancy test kit comes with a test strip or dipstick, a few brands also offer a second type which comes with a urine collection cup.

4) There is a difference between ovulation predictor kits and pregnancy test kits

Ovulation predictor kits and pregnancy test kits work in different ways. While the former observes an increase in the luteinizing hormone, which occurs before a woman ovulates, the latter looks for increase in HCG levels. Although ovulation predictor kits are used by women to test whether they are ovulating or not, they can also be used as pregnancy test kits because both of these hormones work similarly in the body. However, if you decide to use an ovulation predictor kit to detect pregnancy, it would be better to confirm the result by using a pregnancy test kit itself.

5) Timing matters!

If you’re going to the chemist to buy a pregnancy test, chances are, you want an answer ASAP. But earlier isn’t better when it comes to reliability since HCG doubles every 48 hours. It is recommend testing no sooner than a day or two before your missed period – if not the day of – to allow your body enough time to accumulate HCG in the case that you are pregnant. Even then, there’s room for error since your body may secrete HCG later or more slowly than average.

Whenever you decide to test, boost your chances of detecting HCG by taking it first thing in the morning when your urine is most concentrated.

Timing is equally important when you’re waiting for the test to develop so wait for complete time to know the exact results.  If the package says two minutes, then you really have to wait the full two minutes before you know.

How soon should you take the test?

You should wait to take a pregnancy test until the week after your missed period for the most accurate result.

If you don’t want to wait until you’ve missed your period, you should wait at least one to two weeks after you had sex. If you are pregnant, your body needs time to develop detectable levels of HCG. This typically takes seven to 12 days after successful implantation of an egg.

You may receive an inaccurate result if the test is taken too early in your cycle.

Some pregnancy test kits available in the Indian market

Since the past few decades, women have increasingly started to depend on at-home pregnancy test kits rather than clinical tests as the former provide them with comfort and privacy. A number of companies dealing with products related to sexual health and wellness have started manufacturing pregnancy test kits. Here is a list of a few popular brands from which you can choose what suits you best-

1)I Can- I Will Pregnancy Test: Manufactured by Piramal Healthcare Ltd, ‘I Can- I Will Pregnancy Test’ is a one step pregnancy detection kit. It is easily available on online platforms as well as pharmacy outlets. A pack of 3 kits is priced at 144.80/- .

2)Getnews One Step Pregnancy Test: ‘Getnews One Step Pregnancy Test’ is manufactured by Nectar Lifesciences Ltd. A pack of 5 kits is priced at Rs. 350/-. It is commonly available on both online platforms as well as pharmacy outlets.

3)PregaNews Pregnancy Test Strips: This pregnancy test kit is manufactured by Manforce Pharmaceuticals. Each pack kit is priced at Rs. 49/-. You can find it on online stores as well as in pharmacy outlets.

4)Pregakem Pregnancy Detection Kit: This brand is manufactured by Alkem Healthcare Ltd. A pack of 5 kits is priced at Rs. 228/-. It is selectively available in pharmacy outlets and commonly available on online platforms.

5)First Response Pro Digital Pregnancy Test Kit: This digital pregnancy test kit is Bluetooth enabled and connects with its smartphone app, which provides pregnancy and cycle details. It claims that it can show the results 6 days sooner than the woman’s missed period. Each kit is priced at Rs. 1452/-. It is only available on online platforms and not pharmacy outlets.

About the writer:

Purnima P.V is pursuing History(Hons) from Miranda House, University of Delhi. Although a huge history buff, sociology is her one true love. She is also a photographer by passion. She describes herself as an ambivert, an amateur traveler, an avid reader with a special interest in the genre of fictional non-fantasy, a politically opinionated feminist, and an ally as well as a member of the LGTBQIA community.

Where is a good abortion clinic in Delhi?

If you have more doubts:

Write to us at hiddenpocketsinfo@gmail.com
WhatsApp us at +918861713567

Finally I found it !

FPAI –Family Planning Association of India. Ladies!!! Have you heard about it? If yes, then I am happy for you, if no then get ready to receive an amazing information that I am going to give you. For those who are not aware of FPAI, It stands for Family Planning Association for India. They provide services on family planning and unwanted pregnancies. They have clinics around India. Few of the cities are Delhi, Agra, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai. Recently, I got a chance to visit the FPAI clinic in Delhi and I was amazed to see how approachable they were.

Abortion is legal under certain conditions.

First of all, let me start by saying abortion is legal in India until certain weeks. To more know about this, please check our article here.

The clinic we recommend is situated at RK Puram Sector- 4, New Delhi -110022, Opposite Capital Court, Munirka, Near HDFC Bank and Methodist Church. It is easy to locate the clinic. As I went inside the gate the surrounding of the clinic had positive vibes. The plants and trees added to the calmness. I dint feel as if I am standing in front of an abortion clinic. I went and met the Doctor who was all excited to meet us and show around the clinic. As we entered I saw the counsellor’s room. The counsellor had a huge smile on her face. I felt safe and welcomed.  We went and sat with the doctor in the examination room where the patients were examined.

“Privacy and confidentiality is the most important aspect that FPAI follows”, told the doctor.  Whoever comes to the clinic needs to just register with one’s name. This is required, to keep a count of the patients. It is not for public to examine.

Married or Unmarried women can receive abortion services.

Let it be a married women or unmarried women, the information of the patient is kept highly confidential. Nobody asks the patient uncomfortable questions like are you married or not? Where is the husband? Everybody is treated with dignity at FPAI.

As soon as one walks inside the clinic, the person is sent to the counsellor’s room. The counsellor makes sure that the person is comfortable. Privacy is given utmost important. The counsellor discusses what all happened and what can be done. Later the person is sent to the examination room and is examined by the doctor who later provides medicines or performs the operation accordingly.

For abortion or also known as Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP), the woman needs to fill a consent form called ‘Form C’.  Only the consent of the women is required for performing the medical termination.

For the first 4-8 weeks, doctors are willing to provide the medicines or the pills to induce abortion.

Procedures regarding Medical Abortion :

The woman is provided with a medicine kit containing mifepristone and misoprostol.  These medicines are best helpful in first 12 weeks (1st Trimester of abortion).

The doctor properly explains how to utilise these medicines as it is important to take these medicines in a proper way and under the doctor’s guidance

miso-and-mife

Procedure:

  • Day 1:One 200 mg tablet of Mifepristone is taken
  • Day 3 (between 24 to 48 hours):Misoprostol pills of 200 mcg each (total of 800 mcg) are given orally or vaginally.
  • Day 14 – 15:Person returns for a post-treatment examination to affirm that a complete end of pregnancy has happened.

The doctor would recommend to come back for an ultrasound check up after 15 days. As per the doctor if it is difficult to come back to clinic, then get an ultrasound (abdomen) done because it is important to find out if the abortion is completed and women is safe.

The doctor told me these medicines don’t have any side effects but should be always taken under the doctor’s guidance.  It is always better to see if the clinic has displayed the certificate for medical termination practice. One needs to be careful from quacks or unregistered doctors.

After 12 weeks, Doctors normally recommend Surgical abortion.

Surgical Abortion :

 

MVA (Medical Vacuum Aspiration) method  is used for surgical termination. It involves using a specially designed syringe to apply gentle suction to remove the pregnancy or pregnancy tissue from the womb. It can be done with or without local anaesthetic (you will be awake), and takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes to complete. This method is legal, less expensive and more comfortable than Dilation and curettage (which is an old method). It is also safe.

After five weeks,  a surgical procedure is your only option. If you opt for a surgical abortion, you will need to give your doctor a couple of days to make arrangements at the hospital/ clinic. The actual procedure takes only about 15-20 minutes, but you will have to stay in the hospital for four to five hours.

Is Abortion scary? I am nervous?

These are some of the questions that we have been getting in the past.

Is it safe?

Will my Girl friend treated well?

Does it hurt? 

I am unmarried. Will they provide me service?

 

Let me tell you ladies, I found FPAI very friendly and approachable. If required, kindly try utilizing this clinic. It’s friendly, non-judgemental, safe, clean and affordable. The whole facility would cost around 500 INR. Kindly utilize this amazing clinic. Try it out and refer it to the ladies around. Let us all promote safe abortion and health care around us.

We also wanted to share a story of one of our followers who felt lonely and betrayed while trying to terminate her pregnancy : http://www.hidden-pockets.com/abortion-stories-in-india/

You are not alone, we are here!

PS: “FPA India clinics may charge, what we prefer to call as a ‘partial user fee’ to the clients for seeking abortion or any other SRH service. This fee is very subsidized and helps the Association meet some running costs.  Only when the facility is not equipped to provide a particular service (for example some client may need a specialized service, or admission or higher level emergency care) are clients to other facilities.”

 

Women Health Wards, Bengaluru

Hidden-Pockets team went looking for Abortion Clinics in some of the government hospitals in Bangalore. Here are 5 of them that we found and were actually good services.

Please do find the nearest metro lines for easy accessibility.


Listing of Hospitals:

a) Haji Sir Ismail Sait Gosha Hospital

b) Room no. 27, Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital

c) Room no. 29 –  Victoria Hospital

d) Vani Vilas Hospital.

e) A block, K.C General Hospital