The legal position of abortion is different in different states in Australia. There are certain requirements which need to be met in order to legally undertake an abortion, ie. the patient needs to be counselled regarding her options, care is provided by properly trained and registered doctors, the patient signs an informed consent. . The counseling prior to the procedure provides legal documentation, that it would be too risky for the woman's physical or mental health and/or socioeconomic reasons to continue with the pregnancy. It is very important that women are able to terminate a pregnancy, for their own physical, mental and emotional wellbeing, but abortion is not available on demand. At the Sydney abortion clinic we offer surgical termination of pregnancy up to 15 weeks, by our specially trained doctors supported by specialised nurses. If your pregnancy is more than 12 weeks gestation, you will need to be in the clinic 3 hours prior your procedure for pre medication.
The cost of the termination procedure is made up of different components eg. procedure itself, anaesthetic and theatre fees, drugs and equipment used. The total cost to you on the day will be approximately $700 including ultrasound scan. Medicare offers a rebate of $415 for the procedure, which can be claimed back immediately. The rest of the fee is non refundable, though some Private Health Funds may cover a proportion of the cost. This means you will be (700-415 ) = $285 out of pocket for the whole procedure. If you have an IUD (intrauterine device) fitted at the time of the procedure, it will be slightly more. For women who have a Health Care Card, the fees are lower. For women who are in very disadvantaged circumstances, some of the fee may be waived, so that essentially she is "bulk billed", provided she has a Medicare card.
We routinely screen for Chlamydia in all our clients unless they request otherwise. This follows best practice, as Chlamydia infection can often be asymptomatic. It is estimated that 20% of Australian women are infected with Chlamydia. If you don't have a Medicare card, we will still offer the testing, but as this may incur additional costs ( about $110 for a Chlamydia screening test) , it will be your choice as to whether you take the test. We will also counsel you about full screening for sexually transmitted infection, including blood borne viruses. You should talk to one of our doctors about what testing is appropriate for you.
Termination of pregnancy can be undertaken surgically or medically. Surgical termination requires a brief anaesthetic (sedation) and usually is a single straightforward procedure to definitively remove the pregnancy. This is done using suction curettage to gently remove all contents of the uterus. Medical termination means that you take a combination of tablets and vaginal pessaries, allowing the woman to miscarry in her own home, which is usually over a period of approx. 72 hours. Sometimes medical terminations are incomplete and require the woman to have a curette anyway to remove any remaining trace of the pregnancy. We do not offer medical termination at Sydney Abortion Clinics, but there are many other providers in Sydney, where this can be obtained. There is no Medicare rebate for medical termination of pregnancy.