General abortion rate: Total abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years based on Tatauranga Aotearoa Statistics New Zealand’s population estimates, mean year ended 31 December 2020, Census 2018 base.
Abortion population: All abortions notified to the Ministry of Health by abortion providers in New Zealand.
Abortion ratio: The proportion of pregnancies terminated by abortions. The standard for abortion ratios used was the number of induced abortions per 1,000 known pregnancies (live births, stillbirths and abortions combined). Tatauranga Aotearoa Statistics New Zealand uses this same standard.
While the data is collected for 'women' it is important to note that it actually includes all people who had an abortion, and that the data may include some transgender people.
Changes to data collection/processing
Before the passing of the Abortion Legislation Act 2020 in March 2020, the Abortion Supervisory Committee (ASC) had oversight of abortion services, set standards of care and was responsible for annual reporting on abortion-related information. As part of the legislative changes, the ASC was disestablished on 24 March 2020 (ASC 2020).
Abortion statistics measure the number of induced abortions that occur in New Zealand hospitals or licensed abortion clinics.
Purpose of collection
The data provides an overview of abortion numbers, rates and ratios, as well as further breakdown and analysis to gain a more detailed understanding of trends in relation to factors such as age, ethnicity, region, duration of pregnancy, procedures, complications, and contraception. This supports analysis of national abortion service provision. The Ministry uses insights from the data to inform the Ministry Abortion Services work programme and will use the data in the future to evaluate the success of initiatives such as the National Abortion Telehealth Service.
Method of collection/Data provider
Abortions performed before 24 March 2020 were reported to the ASC and collated by Tatauranga Aotearoa Statistics New Zealand.
Abortions performed after 24 March 2020 were reported to and collated by the Data and Digital team at the Ministry of Health.
The Ministry Data and Digital team combined the Statistics New Zealand and Ministry data for 2020 to enable reporting on the complete year.