Reproductive health services in rural Washington State: scope of practice and provision of medical abortions, 1996-1997

Am J Public Health. 2000 Apr;90(4):624-6. doi: 10.2105/ajph.90.4.624.


Objectives: This study explored reproductive health care in rural Washington State, reasons given by providers for not offering abortions, and providers' willingness to use medical abortifacients.

Methods: Physicians, midwives, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants in rural Washington completed an inventory of reproductive health services that they provide, whether and why they do not perform abortions, and whether they would use medical abortifacients.

Results: Of the respondents, 89.2% reported providing reproductive health care. Only 1.2% reported performing surgical abortions, and 26.1% indicated that they would probably prescribe medical abortifacients.

Conclusions: Few providers offer surgical abortions in rural Washington. Greater numbers report a willingness to prescribe medical abortifacients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abortifacient Agents / therapeutic use
  • Abortion, Legal / statistics & numerical data*
  • Adult
  • Drug Utilization / statistics & numerical data
  • Family Planning Services / statistics & numerical data
  • Family Planning Services / supply & distribution*
  • Female
  • Health Personnel / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pregnancy
  • Rural Health Services / statistics & numerical data
  • Rural Health Services / supply & distribution*
  • Washington
  • Workforce


  • Abortifacient Agents