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Thursday, January 26, 2023

What does the abortion law pass in Argentina allow?

The Argentine Senate passed the abortion law on Wednesday, which came to this instance after the positive vote of Deputies, so legal, safe and free abortion is already a reality in the country after years of struggle of social organizations.

Until the adoption of this rule, termination of pregnancy was permitted only in case of risk to the health or life of the pregnant person or for cases of rape, a situation that now changes completely and offers the following possibilities:


This law gives “women and individuals with other gender identities with the ability to gestate” the right to decide to discontinue pregnancy and access abortion and subsequent care in the health system until week 14 (including) gestation.

From week 14 it can only be done in the two cases contemplated before the passage of this law: risk to the health of the mother or rape.

Abortion must be performed in the health system services or with your assistance, within a maximum period of ten days from your request, and will always be free, as will diagnostic benefits, medications and support therapies.

Treatment should also be of quality, meeting the scope and definition of the World Health Organization.


Persons who choose to terminate their pregnancy are entitled to confidentiality, and health personnel responsible for performing abortion must ensure this right and maintain medical secrecy throughout the care process and also the after.

“The patient has the right to have the right to respect the right to confidentiality, unless expressly authorized by the patient herself,” the text states.


Health personnel must respect patients’ decisions regarding the exercise of their reproductive rights, treatment alternatives and future sexual and reproductive health, and these decisions “should not be subjected to trials arising from personal, religious or axiological considerations by health personnel, their free and autonomous will must prevail”.

The patient has the right to receive adequate information about their health.

Information should be provided on the different methods of termination of pregnancy and the scope and consequences of the practice, and this information should be updated, understandable, truthful and provided in language and in accessible formats.


Abortion shall always be done with the informed consent of the pregnant person expressed in writing, and no one can be replaced in the personal exercise of this right.

The person is considered fully able to consent from the age of 16, while minors under the age of 13 must present their informed consent with the assistance of at least one of their parents or legal representative.

Those aged 13 and 16 must consent to the assistance of their parents or guardians if the procedure is done invasively, and not by a medicine, so that their health is compromised.


This law offers a number of rights for pregnant people and also for health workers, who can benefit from conscientious objection if they wish and meet a number of conditions.

First, if a professional wants to materialize this right he has to “keep his decision in all areas, public and private, in which he practices his profession”, and “derive in good faith the patient to be cared for by another or another professional in a temporary and timely manner, without delay”.

It must also “take all necessary measures to ensure access to practice” and “comply with the rest of its professional duties and legal obligations”.

But health personnel may not refuse to carry out the termination of pregnancy in the event that the life or health of the pregnant person is in danger and requires immediate and unsteffable attention, nor can conscientious objection be raised to refuse to provide post-abortion health care.

In the event that there are centers that do not have professionals to perform the termination of pregnancy due to conscientious objection, they should refer the patient to another where they can do so.


Public institutions have a responsibility to implement the Comprehensive Sexual Education Act, “establishing active policies for the promotion and strengthening of the sexual and reproductive health of the entire population.”

They should also train teachers and professionals and other health workers on a gender perspective and sexual diversity, “in order to provide adequate care, containment and follow-up to those seeking voluntary termination of pregnancy under the terms of the law, as well as public officials and public officials acting in such processes”.

This obligation is linked to another of the rights that the law grants to pregnant people, that of “preventing unintentional pregnancies through access to information, comprehensive sex education and effective contraception”.

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