How To Get An Abortion Pill In Sydney – Is It Right For You?

For women wanting to terminate a pregnancy in Sydney, there are a number of options available to them including a medical abortion, often referred to as the abortion pill or RU486.

This differs to the surgical abortion method and instead the abortion generally occurs with a planned series of pills that are taken orally called Mifepristone and Misoprostol.

In most cases, the medical abortion process is available to those in gestation up to nine weeks. So before you decide on a medical abortion, you’ll need to visit a clinic and in some cases you may need an ultrasound and blood tests to see how far along the pregnancy is.

It’s best to consult with an abortion consultant to thoroughly go over your options and to ensure you’re well informed to make the best decision on your preferred treatment.

How Does The Abortion Pill Work?

There are a few steps in the medical abortion process and once you’ve decided it is the right method for you, you’ll need to make an appointment with a nearby, certified clinic.

Remember, abortion laws differ from state to state in Australia, so make sure you consult with an certified abortion clinic within the Sydney region.

A medical abortion constitutes the oral application of two tablets, 36 to 48 hours apart. When used together, they create a miscarriage of the embryo or fetus.

What is Mifepristone or RU486?

Mifepristone, which is commonly referred to as RU486, was originally developed in 1980 and is on the World Health Organisation’s List of Essential Medicines; a list of the most effective and safe medicines needed in a modern health system.

It is the first abortion pill that is taken in the two-step sequence to terminate a pregnancy and is an antiprogestogen. Basically it works by blocking the hormone progesterone, which is needed by the body to maintain a pregnancy.

When this hormone is blocked, the uterine lining starts to shed, the cervix begins to soften and bleeding can start to occur.

What is Misoprostol?

Misoprostol was first developed for stomach ulcers in 1973 and is also on the World Health Organisation’s List of Essential Medicines. Misoprostol is used in conjunction with Mifepristone to terminate a pregnancy and is the second tablet, which is generally taken 36-48 hours after the Mifepristone.

Misoprostol brings on miscarriage quickly in most cases, and works by causing the uterus to contract and expel its contents.

What are the Side Effects of Mifepristone and Misoprostol?

Some people can feel a bit nauseous after taking Mifepristone and in some cases bleeding can occur although it is not very common. In some cases, you may be given some antibiotics to take, just as a precaution to prevent any infections.

Painful cramping and bleeding will generally occur within 1-3 hours of taking the Misoprostol tablet. Some might even experience vomiting, headaches, nausea, diarrhea and constipation as a result.

What to Expect From the Abortion Pill

Once the combination of the RU486 and Misoprostol tablets have been taken orally, the miscarriage begins to take effect.

It’s common to pass large blood clots or clumps of tissue during the medical abortion process. Most of the pregnancy tissue is passed within a 5-6 hour timeframe, but keep in mind, the cramping and bleeding can continue for a few days after.

Where Can I Get The Abortion Pill in Sydney?

Gyanecology Centres Australia specialise in pregnancy termination in Sydney and in five locations across Australia. They provide services across women’s health and male vasectomy. For a confidential appointment with one of our specialists to discuss terminations, medical treatment, counselling or to further discuss your pregnancy options, click here.


Abortion Legalised in Queensland

As of October 17th, 2018, abortion in Queensland is no longer a crime. Longstanding laws which made abortion illegal in Queensland have been scrapped in a historic parliamentary vote on the Queensland government’s plan to decriminalise the termination of pregnancy.

What Do The New Laws Mean?

Ultimately, women in Queensland will now be free to access termination services without stigma or fear. Health professionals will also be able to provide these critical services, giving women safe access to healthcare that literally saves lives.

According to the Termination of Pregnancy Act 2018, abortion in Queensland will now be available up to 22 weeks’ gestation upon a woman’s request. For late-term abortions, it is now legal for these to be provided by a medical practitioner, provided they first consult with a second medical practitioner. Both must be in agreement that the termination of pregnancy should be performed “in all circumstances”.

Doctors, if they are so inclined, will have the right to refuse to offer an abortion on personal moral grounds; they are, however, now legally required to refer the woman to another medical practitioner who will perform the termination.

Additionally, fertility and termination clinics will be legally protected by a safe access zone of 150 metres, preventing protesters from approaching and harassing women and their families who attend these clinics.

A Long Time Coming

Women’s groups have been fighting for these reforms for fifty years, with abortion debated in Queensland several times since the 1970s, when a clinic opened in Brisbane and women marched for abortion rights for the first time. In 1985, the Queensland government attempted (unsuccessfully) to prosecute surgeons providing abortion services, and raids were ordered on clinics. Abortion was classed as a moral offence.

This is the first time this law has been amended since it was set in 1899 as a morality section of the state’s criminal code – well before women gained the right to vote or to even own their own property.

This is a landmark moment for the equality of women in Queensland, who for the first time will have the right to full autonomy over their own bodies and their own reproductive rights. Termination of a pregnancy is never an easy decision, and it is critical that women can make this decision for themselves without fear of reprisal, harassment, or criminal prosecution.

New South Wales is now the only Australian state to criminalise abortion.

For More Information or Assistance

Contact us today at Gynaecology Centres Australia to receive more information about these legislative changes relating to abortion in Queensland, or for further advice or assistance relating to any women’s health issue including but not limited to unplanned pregnancy. We offer women of all ages and from all walks of life our full support with complete confidentiality. Our staff of experienced medical professionals provides the highest standard of care with empathy and understanding.

Please contact us and find information regarding a clinic near you.


My Health Record

You have most likely heard about My Health Record recently in the news or from your local doctor. In a society that is ever more technologically connected, it is a way for your medical records to be accessed quickly and securely online from any computer and device that has an internet connection.

According to Australian Government Policy, every Australian will automatically receive a My Health Record unless you actively opt out before 15th November 2018.

Many people have some concerns about My Health Record, which we aim to address here.

What is My Health Record?

My Health Record is an Australian Government program which provides an online record and summary of your personal medical information, which is available Australia-wide even if you move or are vacationing interstate.

Your My Health Record collates health information from your health care providers, Medicare, and you. It can include details of your medical conditions, medications, treatments, surgeries, allergies, immunisation history, scan and test results, and other medical procedures.

This record can be accessed and added to by health professionals in emergency departments, medical centres, hospitals, pharmacies, by pathologists and imaging centres, as well as information directly from Medicare. You can also add information yourself, including current medications, emergency contact details, allergy information, Indigenous status, Veteran status, and more.

At this stage, My Health Record information and access are kept safe and secure by the Cyber Security Centre, part of the Australian Digital Health Agency.

In the case of a medical emergency, where there is a serious threat to your life, safety, or health, emergency access may be provided even if you have restricted access to your My Health Record. This will provide access to information relating to allergies, medications you require, and your immunisation history.

My Health Record at Gynaecology Centres Australia

Here at Gynaecology Centres Australia, we value patient confidentiality very highly, and we understand that not all information should be available to just any medical professional. There are some aspects of your health and medical history that are not relevant to other health providers, even in an emergency situation.

Due to the sensitive nature of our work at this clinic, we have decided not to upload any details of your visit to us into your My Health Record. This is a decision we have taken as part of our strong commitment to your confidentiality and your right to control who has access to your private information.

However, there are certain elements of your visit to our clinic that may be uploaded automatically into your My Health Record. This is not by us, but by:

  • Medicare (such as medical services provided by us which are subsidised by Medicare, as well as the details of subsidised medication prescriptions)
  • Pathology providers (such as test results ordered by us or by another doctor)
  • Radiography, Sonography, or Nuclear Imaging companies (such as reports of ultrasounds done outside our clinic)

Controlling Your Own Information

You can ultimately control which information is shared with your My Health Record by others. You can choose to:

  • Opt-out of having a My Health Record before 15 November 2018. You will require your driver’s license/passport and Medicare card to complete this process. (As a parent, you can also opt out on behalf of your minor children) click here to opt-out.
  • Cancel your My Health Record at any time. Click here to cancel.
  • Remove certain information from your My Health Record. Click here to remove info.
  • Block or restrict access to all or part of your My Health Record. Click here to block.

The access to your information is in your own hands.

For More Information

Contact us at Gynaecology Centres Australia today if you wish to receive further advice relating to My Health Record or any other women’s health issue. We offer women full support, empathy, and confidentiality with the highest standard of care provided by experienced medical professionals. Please contact us and find information regarding a clinic near you.

For further information on My Health Record, please visit www.myhealthrecord.gov.au or call 1800 723 471.


Young people were asked to take STI test in exchange for entry to VIP area at Splendour in the Grass

SPLENDOUR in the Grass revellers were asked to take a sexually transmitted infection (STI) test, in exchange for entry into a VIP area at the festival last weekend.

Health authorities provided Chlamydia testing for young people at Splendour in the Grass as part of the award-winning Down to Test program.

Since the program launched last year, almost 2500 young people have provided a urine sample for testing, with 71 positive for chlamydia, a disease that can cause infertility if left untreated.

STI rates in Australia are rising, with the number of chlamydia cases almost doubling over the past decade, and those most affected are aged 15 to 29,” NSW Health’s STI Program Unit head Dr Chris Bourne said.

Music festivals present an opportunity to reach our target audience, raise awareness of STIs and reduce the stigma around testing. And results show this program is working.

The Chlamydia test is confidential, takes less than five minutes and a result can be ready in a few days via text or a phone call.

We hope record numbers will visit our VIP tent and in return we offer a ‘chill out’ area, free phone charging, clean toilets, a make-up bar and peace of mind,” Dr Bourne said.

There were 28,000 chlamydia notifications in NSW last year. Most people are unaware they have the infection but chlamydia is easily cured by a single dose of antibiotics.

The Centre for Social Research in Health at UNSW is monitoring the progress of the Down to Test program, which recently picked up a Mumbrella advertising award.

After surveying past participants in the program, researchers found over half reported improved knowledge of STIs and sexual health, while a third vowed to continue STI testing.

For more information on where to go to get a STI test call the NSW Sexual Health Infolink 1800 451 624.

Source: News.com.au.


NSW Abortion Exclusion Zone Bill Passed

On June 8 this year, a New South Wales abortion clinic ‘safe zone’ bill passed the Lower House, meaning protesters who intimidate or harass people within 150 metres of hospitals or clinics that provide terminations, can now face punishment including fines and jail time.

This abortion exclusion zone, which is officially referred to as The Public Health Amendment (Safe Access to Reproductive Health Clinics) Bill 2018, now brings NSW in line with Tasmania, Victoria, ACT and Australian Capital Territory.

How Did The Abortion Clinic Safe Access Bill Come About?

The bill was introduced by Upper House Labor MP Penny Sharpe and was co-sponsored by Nationals MP Trevor Khan.

In the lead-up to the bill getting passed, the abortion clinic safe access topic sparked debate with some MPs publicly voicing opinions both for and against based on a variety of beliefs.

On the morning of June 8, after the bill was passed, Penny Sharpe told Australian media it was a “terrific day for women in New South Wales”.

However some of her counterparts disagreed.

Family and Community Services Minister Pru Goward claimed she voted against the bill. She said her vote was in line with the right to free speech, and that she is a “strong and visceral believer” when it comes to the freedom of speech. She further added, “I would so much like to support this bill, I know what it will mean to the women affected, but I cannot.”

Nationals MP Barnaby Joyce was also clear on his intentions to vote against the bill, stating that he was “allowed, entitled and obligated” to lobby his party to oppose the bill.

“People know I’ve got a pro-life position. I am surrounded by people who don’t and I respect their views and the respect mine,” he told the media. 

“And of course, all of us have a duty to express our views in a debate and members of parliament are there to have your views expressed and that is precisely what, not only am I allowed to do, I am entitled to do and, I think, in some instances, you are obligated to.”

What Does The Abortion Exclusion Zone Mean?

The Public Health Amendment (Safe Access to Reproductive Health Clinics) Bill 2018, introduces legislation prohibiting any communication “in relation to abortions” that are deemed “reasonably likely to cause distress or anxiety” to people who are entering abortion clinics or hospitals. This exclusion zone is within 150 meters from the perimeter of the building.

What Are The Fines

NSW Abortion Exclusion Zone Bill Passed: Colloquially referred to as the ‘safe zone’ bill, this legislation means people who are protesting or are deemed to be causing distress or anxiety to people within 150 meters of abortion clinic or hospital will be subject to fines including $5500 or six months’ prison. A second offence could incur a fine of $11,000 or 12 months’ prison.

The bill passed the Lower House in the early hours of the morning on June 8 at 61 votes to 18. Two weeks prior to that it passed through the Upper House with 25 voting in favour, 13 against and four abstaining.

For a confidential appointment with one of our specialists to discuss terminations, medical treatment, counselling or to further discuss your pregnancy options, click here. 


Ireland Abortion

Ireland Abortion Legalised After Referendum

On May 25 Ireland abortion laws lifted their 35-year ban through a controversial and successful abortion referendum.

The majority ‘yes’ vote at the polls now means the women of Ireland will have the right to legally terminate their pregnancy up until the 12-week mark; something they have previously been unable to do under the Eighth Amendment.

But as the Ireland abortion referendum caught headlines around the world, the once-taboo topic also sparked myriad conversations around the globe as the debate teetered between being called a health issue and a religious one.

Interestingly, the topic of abortion in Ireland has been the subject of six referendums and many court decisions during in the last 35 years.

While Ireland now joins a long list of countries that have legalised abortion, there are still 18 countries around the world that still have a total ban on it.

So what made the majority of people in Ireland choose to legalise it after almost four decades, and what led the procedure to be deemed illegal in Ireland in the first place? With an eye on the future we take a look back at where it all began.

The History of Ireland’s Abortion Laws

Prior to May 25 this year, the Republic of Ireland had a total ban on abortion in a law that was set in 1983 and governed by the Eighth Amendment which states, “Provision may be made by law for the regulation of termination of pregnancies”.

At that time and according to the Central Statistics Office, 93 percent of the population of the Republic of Ireland identified as being Catholic. It was also a time when homosexuality was illegal and contraception was restricted. These restrictions were relaxed later in the 1980s while homosexuality was subsequently decriminalized in the 1990s.

A Timeline of the Ireland Abortion Laws

  • The Early Days
    The “unlawful procurement of a miscarriage” was stated a crime under the Offences Against The Person Act of 1861, which remained in force after Irish independence in 1922.
  • Pro-life Anti-Abortion Advocacy
    In 1983, an anti-abortion advocacy organization that was set up two years prior instigated the Pro-Life Amendment Campaign which brought about the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution through a successful referendum on banning abortion in September 7, 1983.
  • Abortion With Restrictions
    In a court ruling in 1992, it was concluded that abortion was permitted in the case where pregnancy threatens a woman’s life including suicide. In this case a 14-year-old statutory rape victim, known in the courts and to the media as ‘X’ (to protect her identity), contemplated suicide over her unwanted pregnancy.
  • The Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act
    In 2012 the death of Savita Halappanavar grabbed headlines all around the world, once again sparking debate, rallies and marches over abortion laws in Ireland. The 31-year-old dentist died from septic miscarriage on October 28, 2012 at 17 weeks’ gestation. She had been denied an abortion by the medical team before miscarrying then dying from cardiac arrest caused by the sepsis. As a result of her death, the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act 2013, which allows for legal abortion under circumstances, was passed.
  • Referendum Gains Momentum
    In 2016 the death of Savita Halappanavar increased calls for repeal over the Constitution as the need for a referendum gained momentum.
  • Abortion Legalised in Ireland
    On May 26, 2018 a 66.4 percentage of votes in the referendum approved the Thirty-Sixth Amendment of the Constitution Bill 2018 to allow for legislation on the termination of pregnancy.

Abortion Laws Around The World

According to the World Health Organisation, there are still 18 countries around the world that currently have a total ban on abortion, including Malta, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Philipines and El Salvador.

Contrary to that, most of Europe, North America, northern Asia as well as Cambodia, South Africa and many more have legalised abortion. In Australia it has been decriminalised in some states, however in other states it’s only considered lawful under a range of circumstances. The United States legalised abortion more than four decades ago back in 1973 after a landmark court decision, however despite being legal, it can be restricted by each of the states to varying degrees.

While the Republic of Ireland has liberalised abortion some say this might also influence its closest neighbour Northern Ireland, whose laws governing the termination of pregnancy currently date back to the 19th century.

For a confidential appointment with one of our specialists to discuss terminations, medical treatment, counseling or to further discuss your pregnancy options, click here.


Understanding the new HPV vaccine

The new HPV vaccine is available in Australia as part of the National Immunisation Program (NIP). The new nonavalent human papillomavirus is available as a two-dose schedule and replaces the old three-dose quadrivalent vaccine.

Parents of girls and boys in the 12-13 age bracket will now be able to consider giving consent for their children to receive the vaccine as part of the school-based program. The NIP is also funding a catch-up program for ages up to 19 years, which has been ongoing since July 2017.

What Does the New Vaccine Protect Against?

The new vaccine contains many of the same virus-like particles as the previous version such as types 6 and 11 to protect against genital warts, and types 16 and 18, which are the most oncogenic (possessing tumour causing properties).

Five other oncogenic HPV types have been introduced to increase the range of the vaccine’s protection against the most commonly developing cervical cancers, which includes types 31, 33, 45, 52, and 58.

With the introduction of the new vaccine, protection against cervical cancers in Australia will increase from 70% to over 90%. Further to that, there is also a heightened benefit in protecting against other cancers related to HPV, as the majority of these are due to the HPV types 16 and 18.

An Effective and Safe Vaccine

Randomised trials in women who have never previously been infected have shown the vaccine to be very effective at preventing infection from high-grade diseases caused by HPV types 31, 33, 45, 52, and 58.

The new vaccine produces a higher number of reactions at the injection site, but only slightly higher than the quadrivalent vaccine. There are also fewer reactions in girls and boys than adult women. The number of systemic adverse events remains identical between both vaccines.

HPV vaccines have been in widespread use all over the world for more than a decade now, with over 270 million doses being administered. They continue to receive the green light from the World Health Organization (WHO), which considers them extremely safe.

A recommendation has been made for children under the age of 14 to receive two doses of the new HPV vaccine, with each dose administered 6 to 12 months apart from the first dose. Older individuals are still required to receive a total of three doses, as well as those who are immunocompromised.

If a person has already received their first dose, those who were under the age of 14 at the time of receiving it, and have had a second dose no less than six months apart will be considered to have received a complete course. Everybody else who does not fit within that group will need to undergo the three-dose treatment.

If a vaccination has already been administered, then revaccination is not recommended. This is because HPV provides powerful protection against HPV 16 and 18 types, and all three HPV vaccines provide significant protection against these types as well.

Research has discovered that 50% of all cancer-causing HPV infections have been caught by the age of 20.  At 30 years of age, that number reaches 75%. The prevalence of these infections is the reason that cervical screening is also an important prevention strategy for women who are sexually active.

Patients who have previously received an HPV vaccination may opt in to receiving a second course of nonavalent HPV, which is not NIP funded. Anyone over the age of 15 will need to receive the 3-dose course.

If you have any questions about the new HPV vaccine, please don’t hesitate to call our clinic on 02 9585 9599 to find out more information, or contact us on our website at https://gcaus.com.au/contact-gca/.


Tasmanian Abortion Clinics

Federal Labor has pledged $1 million towards funding a public abortion clinic. The move follows the closure of a Tasmanian abortion clinic, forcing women to travel interstate to receive surgical abortions.

After the recent closure of an abortion clinic, the funds will help build a stand-alone reproductive health hub. Deputy Leader Tanya Plibersek made the statement that Tasmania’s premier had neglected women.

While in Hobart with state opposition leader Rebecca White, Tanya Plibersek said: “Will Hodgman and his government have been spectacularly ineffective in ensuring this vital service is available for Tasmanian women.”

However, the funding does not become available until Labor holds power at the Federal level, with state Labor pledging funding for surgical abortions through the public system if they are elected in the majority.

According to Labor, the new hub will be able to perform up to 250 abortions per year, negating the need for hundreds of Tasmanian women to travel interstate to receive abortion procedures.

Following the closure of a major abortion clinic in Tasmania in late 2017, women’s health groups have claimed that many Tasmanian women may have no other option other than to fly to Victoria for an abortion service.

Tasmania’s incumbent Liberal government has accused Labor of using the sensitive issue of abortion as a political platform to sway voters and has failed in accurately costing the hub. The Liberal government provides financial assistance for women who need to travel to the mainland to receive an abortion.

On March 3, Tasmanians will go to the polls to cast their votes, with victory expected to be by a minor margin.

If you need advice on abortion or have questions about which contraception method is right for you, please contact Gynaecology Centres Australia on 02 9585 9599 to book in for an appointment at your earliest convenience. You can also reach us through our website here.