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  • Do I need a doctor’s referral to book an appointment?
    Not at all. If you are less than 12 weeks' gestation, feel free to book an appointment online via our website. Alternatively, you can give our clinic a call to book your appointment. If you are over 12 weeks, give our clinic a call so we can go over some things with you prior to booking your appointment. No referral is needed.
  • Do I need my parent’s or my partner’s permission?
    You never need your partner's permission to have an abortion. This is legally your decision. If you are less than 14 years old, we do require an adult to come with you and co-sign your consent. If you are between 14 and 16 years old you can come talk to our doctor about the consent process, which may require an adult co-signee. Otherwise, as long as you are over 16 years old, no one else needs to know or approve.
  • Is there a waiting period before I can have my procedure?
    At Cabbagetown Women's Clinic, procedures are offered on the same day as the initial assessment. Please allow 3-4 hours for your whole visit, including the procedure.
  • Do I have to pay for the procedure myself or is it covered under my health plan?
    All services at our clinic are completely covered under OHIP. If you do not have a valid OHIP card, please call our clinic for a review of expected charges, which you can then recover from your insurance plan if available.
  • Is the procedure going to hurt?
    Both the medical and surgical abortions can feel crampy, similar to a heavy or painful menstrual period. During the surgical procedure, we do give you strong pain medication as well as anti-anxiety medication. If you decide to have the pill abortion, you can take Advil (Ibuprofen) /Tylenlol (Acetaminophen) or Gravol (Dimenhydrinate) at home to make you more comfortable.
  • Am I going to be put to sleep?
    No. Our clinic does all procedures under what's known as "conscious sedation". This means you get medication to help you be calm and not remember, as well as strong medications to control pain. But it is important to understand that we do not put you to sleep. We will be talking to you throughout the 5 to 10 minute procedure, and keeping an eye on your comfort level to optimize it.
  • Will I be able to have children after an abortion?
    An uncomplicated abortion has not been shown to change a woman's fertility. If there are severe complications (which are highly unlikely) there may be effects on fertility. These complications will be reviewed with you in detail, to make sure you understand them. However, keep in mind that the risk of all possible complications added together is extremely small (for example, the risk of perforating the uterus, which is the most common complication, is approximately 0.05%).
  • Will my doctor know that I had an abortion?
    The only process for releasing ANY information to anyone else outside of our clinic is if you sign a consent to do so. This includes your doctor, who will only be given information if we have your signed consent.
  • Is it possible to get pregnant after an abortion procedure?
    Your fertility (your ability to get pregnant) can return as early as 1 week after an abortion. This is why we will be reviewing all available methods of birth control with you to help prevent pregnancy as soon as possible. Birth control is always up to you. No pressure. But it is highly recommended.
  • What is the Morning After Pill / Emergency Contraceptive / Plan B®?
    This is a set of pills available at any pharmacy (just ask the pharmacist if you don't have a prescription) that you can take as soon as you know you may have had exposure to sperm. (For example, as soon as you notice the condom has broken). If you take it within the first 72 hours after unprotected sex, it is very effective to prevent a pregnancy.
  • Will anyone find out I had an abortion?
    Only if you sign a written consent to release this information. Otherwise it is only on records in the clinic.
  • Can I bring someone with me?
    Usually we allow and encourage a support person in the waiting room and counselling room. During COVID however, we are mandated by the government to keep only those people needing essential services within the clinic. We are so sorry and are supportive of your helper waiting outside (or in the car) to where you can visit him/her before or after the procedure.
  • How long will the appointment take?
    This depends on how busy we are. Please allow a minimum of 3-4 hours for the whole visit from beginning to end. It may take less time, but we cannot guarantee this. Please know we are trying as hard as we can to get you through this safely, quickly and with TLC (tender loving care /:).
  • Will I need to take time off from work or school?
    Usually not. We recommend you do not do any heavy lifting/running/vigorous exercise for a couple of weeks after the surgery, as it may increase your bleeding. If you need a note to this effect, we can provide this at the end of your service.
  • How should I get to the clinic?
    Please do not drive. The medications we give you for the procedure may interfere with safe driving. You can take public transport or get a drive (taxi, Uber, a drive from a love one) or even walk if you are close to us.
  • Will there be protestors? Will I be safe?
    By Ontario law, protestors are not allowed close to the clinic. The closest they can come is across the street. During recent years, there are usually no protestors.
  • What should I bring to my appointment?
    Bring your valid OHIP card, any labwork or ultrasounds that may have been done during this pregnancy (not necessary but bring them if available) and a pad. Otherwise we have all you need.
  • How do I choose between a surgical and a medical abortion?
    Our counsellor and physician will help you make this decision. Depending on your specific context, there may be recommendations for one or other procedure. Otherwise, we can help you figure out what is most convenient and acceptable for you.
  • How common is abortion?
    There are over 100 000 abortions performed in Canada each year. Abortion is the most common surgical procedure in Canada, and it is very safe. One in three women will have an abortion in her lifetime.

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