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What is a Private Abortion Clinic?

By Lori Smith
Updated May 17, 2024
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A private abortion clinic offers full-service medical and surgical pregnancy terminations in a supportive, confidential environment. They are usually equipped to handle all aspects of an outpatient abortion procedure, including physical examinations, anesthesia, administration of antibiotics and pain medication. The difference between these centers and gynecologists who performs abortions in their offices is that they specialize in the termination of unwanted pregnancies and generally provide counseling if the patient desires it. Most importantly, they typically offer anonymity to their patients.

Some women are uncomfortable asking their gynecologists to conduct an abortion. They may fear judgment or are afraid that other people might find out. Another problem that arises is that not all doctors are willing to perform the procedure. A private abortion clinic offers these services to women in a safe and secure environment.

Immediately following surgical procedures at a private abortion clinic, a patient may be given a choice to recover with others or in a secluded and private recovery room. Appointments are sometimes scheduled during the evening or weekend hours so women can be assured they will not be seen before or after the procedure. There is typically an additional fee for this type of arrangement, however.

A private abortion clinic usually offers both surgical and medical pregnancy terminations, based on a patient's eligibility for them. A medical abortion ends a pregnancy with the use of pills instead of surgery. It is generally an option for pregnant women within the first two months after conception. When a woman is more than eight weeks pregnant, a healthcare professional may perform a surgical abortion, which is when pills may no longer be a valid option.

A patient who schedules an appointment with a private abortion clinic for a surgical termination will typically be provided with medication to help her relax and ease pain. The medical professional then dilates the cervix so the lining of the uterus, or tissue, can be removed. The outpatient procedure itself usually takes less than a half hour. The patient is then escorted to the recovery room where she can rest and recuperate until she feels well enough to go home. During this time, a snack or a beverage may be offered, and the nurse will provide post-operative medication and instructions.

Several weeks after a pregnancy termination, a follow-up appointment at the facility helps ensure the woman is healing properly. Post-operative problems rarely occur, but when they do, it is essential that women receive prompt treatment to avoid infection or other complications. During this follow-up visit, the patient may speak to a counselor, if desired, or receive birth control.

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