Mexico: Country Context

  • Although abortion has been legal up to 12 weeks of gestation in Mexico City since 2007, it is highly restricted in Mexico’s 31 states.
  • In spite of these restrictions, abortion remains common: there were more than 1 million clandestine abortions in 2009.
  • It is estimated that 36% of clandestine abortions lead to complication that require medical attention, and that one quarter of the women that require medical attention as a result of an unsafe abortion never receive it.
  • In Mexico City, there are almost no complications associated with legal, first trimester abortions.
  • All 31 states allow abortion in cases of rape; 25 states allow abortion to if it is necessary to save the woman’s life; 12 states allow abortions when the pregnancy is determined to pose a serious risk to the woman’s health; and 13 states allow abortion in cases of serious fetal malformation.
  • The stigma associated with abortion and the limited availability of safe abortion services make access difficult for many women that qualify for legal abortions.
  • Even in Mexico City, where first trimester abortion is legal for all women, there are hospitals that refuse to provide legal abortion services, on the basis that their doctors are conscientious objectors.



Advocating for access to safe reproductive health care.