Interprofessional Care of Surgical and Medical Abortion Patients

Abortion was completely decriminalized in Canada in 1988. It is a common and safe sexual health service, with one in three women/people with a uterus in Canada experiencing abortion in their lifetimes. Abortion care is provided by nurses, nurse practitioners, physicians, social workers, pharmacists, and others, yet abortion care is noticeably lacking from curricula across the health professions. Students in the health professions are unaware of how often abortion is relevant to practice areas outside of abortion clinics, including but not limited to community health, emergency departments, family practice, primary care, school health and public health. Addressing social stigma about abortion begins with normalizing abortion as health care. The shortage of trained providers of care is one of the most persistent limits to abortion access in Canada, particularly for people in rural and remote communities. The objective of this course is to introduce interprofessional abortion care to students across the health professions at Dalhousie University, to learn with, from and about each other’s roles in this essential health service.

By participating in this mini course students will:

  • have reflected upon their beliefs, values and assumptions relative to contraception, reproductive autonomy and abortion, and learned the relevance of this reflection on their professional role of support with people who have experienced unplanned pregnancy and reproductive coercion 
  • better understand the personal, cultural and institutional contexts of reproductive control and their effects on people seeking care from health care professionals 
  • have enhanced consciousness regarding politicized action that can be taken to counter the personal, cultural and institutional contexts of reproductive control


Synchronous Online

Faculty Lead

Martha Paynter (Nursing)


Laurie Graham (Nursing), Ruth Martin-Misener (Nursing), Melissa Brooks (Medicine), Lianne Yoshida (NS Women’s Choices Clinic), Danielle Leblanc Kristen (NS Women’s Choices Clinic), Turtle (NS Women’s Choices Clinic),  Anna Finlayson (Social Work), and CJ Blennerhassett (IWK)  

Online Synchronous Dates

Feb 1, 3, 8 & 10, 2022

Online Synchronous Time

4-5:30pm Atlantic Time

Online Platform used