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Slight increase seen in abortions

The number of abortions carried out in England and Wales has risen slightly, according to figures.

Abortions rose by 0.3% between 2009 and 2010, from 189,100 to 189,574.

However, the figure is up by 8% from 2000, when just 175,542 abortions were carried out.

The latest abortion figures were to women living in England and Wales. Another 6,535 were to non-residents.

The last time there was a rise in the total number of abortions was between 2006 and 2007.

Half of abortions (49%) in 2010 were to women with partners, while 26% were to single women and 16% of abortions occurred within marriage.

Some 3,718 were to girls under 16 (slightly down on the previous year), 12,742 were to those aged 16 and 17, and 21,809 were to girls aged 18 and 19.

Some 27,046 abortions were among women aged 35 and over.

In total, 64,303 procedures were to women who had chosen to have at least one abortion previously.

Of these, 1,201 abortions were among girls under 18 who had undergone one previous abortion, while 79 were to girls who had had two or more.

Dr Paula Franklin, Director of Clinical Development at Marie Stopes International, said: "Although the numbers are similar to those of 2009, we are surprised not to see a further decrease in the number of abortions across England and Wales."

Copyright © Press Association 2011

Marie Stopes International