The researchers aimed to learn about unlawful abortion access, methods, and perceived barriers to abortion-related care. They sought to identify the proportion of unscheduled antepartum visits to a public hospital attributable to unsafe abortion in Cap Haitien, Haiti.

The researchers conducted eight focus groups. They conducted thirteen interviews with women’s health providers and pregnant or recently pregnant women presenting to the hospital.

Among the focus groups, there was widespread knowledge of misoprostol self-managed abortion. Women described the use of multiple agents in combination with misoprostol. Men played critical roles in abortion decision-making and in accessing misoprostol.

The sample size consisted of previously 255 pregnant or recently pregnant women. Researchers surveyed them, 61.2% reported the current pregnancy was unintended, and 30% told about attempting an induced abortion. The majority of women used misoprostol either alone or as a part of the medication/herb regimen for their self-managed abortion.

The study concluded that awareness of methods to induce abortion is high among women in urban Haiti and appears widely practiced. Yet, knowledge of the safest self-managed abortion options remains incomplete. Access to safer abortion services could improve maternal health in Haiti.