Postabortion care counseling practiced by health professionals in southeastern Nigeria

Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2010 Oct;111(1):53-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2010.06.003. Epub 2010 Aug 1.


Objective: To determine the practice of postabortion care (PAC) counseling among healthcare professionals in southeastern Nigeria.

Methods: A cross-sectional questionnaire-based survey conducted among healthcare professionals in Anambra State, southeastern Nigeria, in 2006. Participants were chosen using a multi-stage sampling technique. A pre-tested questionnaire assessing the practice of PAC counseling was administered.

Results: A total of 431 health professionals were questioned: 270 (62.6%) medical doctors and 161 (37.4%) nurses. Of 302 (70.1%) respondents who reported practicing PAC counseling, only 173 (40.1%) had received formal training. PAC counseling was most commonly practiced by health professionals working in the University Teaching Hospital (90.5%). It was also more commonly practiced by nurses in rural areas compared with nurses working in urban areas (75 [67.6%] vs 24 [48.0%]; P=0.02).

Conclusion: A high proportion of health professionals reported practicing PAC counseling. However, less than half had received formal training in PAC counseling. An increased PAC training activity program, with an emphasis on counseling, is recommended for health professionals to improve the overall quality of PAC service delivery.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aftercare* / methods
  • Aftercare* / psychology
  • Counseling* / methods
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nigeria
  • Nurses*
  • Physicians*
  • Workforce
  • Young Adult