Need an abortion?

Here you can find information about getting an abortion in Poland and other countries that have made abortion illegal or in the Netherlands where abortions are legal up to 22 weeks.

Abortion In Poland

Abortion in Poland is illegal. However for pregnancies up to 12 weeks an at home abortion with pills is a safe way to end a pregnancy. Please contact the Abortion Without Borders helpline to get more information on your options: + 48 22 29 22 597 (08:00-20:00) or send an e-mail via administracja@maszwybor.net

Abortion In the Netherlands

Information about abortion in the Netherlands:

ANA works mostly with three clinics in and around Amsterdam: the Abortuskliniek Amsterdam, the Beahuis & Bloemenhovekliniek (who are run by the same management) and the Vrelinghuis.
If you need (financial) help, email ANA before making an appointment.

Below you’ll find a list of all abortion clinics in the Netherlands.

Up to 9 weeks

Amsterdam*

Women on Waves Amsterdam

Den Bosch**

Mildred

Up to 12 weeks

Almere

Abortuskliniek Almere

Den Bosch

Vrouwen Medisch Centrum

Den Haag

Abortuskliniek Den Haag

Enschede

Emmakliniek

Goes

ZEAZ

Groningen

Stimezo/CSGNN

Zwolle

Stimezo Zwolle

Up to 18 weeks

Amsterdam

Stichting Abortuskliniek Amsterdam

Arnhem

Mildred

Eindhoven

Mildred

Roermond

Gynaikon Klinieken

Rotterdam

Gynaikon Klinieken

Up to 22 weeks

Heemstede

Beahuis & Bloemenhovekliniek

Utrecht

Vrelinghuis

*the Women on Waves clinic provides medical abortions only. You can go here even if you are not insured and/or not a citizen of the Netherlands.
**the Mildred clinic, Den Bosch is located in a health center. It is only open on Saturdays and provides medical abortions only.

Abortion clinics which specialise in second trimester abortions (up to 22 weeks)

Beahuis & Bloemenhovekliniek
Address: Herenweg 211-215, 2106 MJ Heemstede
Telephone: +3123-5289890
Website: www.bloemenhove.nl

Vrelinghuis
Address: Biltstraat 397-423, 3572 AV Utrecht
Telephone: +3130-2333542
Website: www.vrelinghuis.nl

Practical information for procedures

If you need help making an appointment, we can call the clinic for you.

We will need the following information from you when scheduling an abortion:

  • Your full name
  • Your date of birth
  • Your height and weight
  • A copy of an ultrasound or a doctor’s note confirming your pregnancy. You can also send us the date of the ultrasound and the following values on the ultrasound: BPD and FL
  • The first day of your last period*
  • Whether you have a European Health Insurance Card or can get one
  • A telephone number where you can be reached if needed 
  • Any allergies you have
  • Any medication you take
  • Do you already have children? If so, were any born by cesarean section?
  • Is there an issue with this pregnancy that might need special attention during the procedure? (Please share medical details honestly, so we can find the appropriate clinic for you. This can even be a dutch hospital in rare complicated cases)
  • What is the earliest date you can get an appointment?
  • Do you have anyone you trust who knows about your situation?
  • Have you been vaccinated against Covid?

*The pregnancy term is counted in weeks starting from the first day of your last period – the earliest you will find out you are pregnant is usually around 5 weeks from this date.

Termination methods

5* – 8 weeks

Abortion Pill
procedure: at clinic – 1 oral tablet (Mifegyne) that blocks proceeding pregnancy
2 days later – 4x vaginal tablet (Misoprostol) that causes cramping
*5 day consideration time not needed if within 45 days after last menstruation. (= up to 6 weeks + 2 days pregnant)

5 – 12 weeks

Vacuum aspiration
anesthesia: local anesthesia (injections) or sedation (light anesthesia)
duration procedure: 5-10 mins
total time at clinic: 5 hours

13 – 17 weeks

Instrumental abortion
anesthesia: usually sedation, local anesthesia in some cases
duration procedure: 10-20 mins
total time at clinic: 6 hours

18 – 22 weeks

Instrumental abortion
anesthesia: always general sedation
duration procedure: 15-25 mins
total time at the clinic: 8-10 hours

Practical information around your appointment

Before the procedure

It is important that you have been fasting in order to have an empty stomach on the day of the procedure. Please follow the specific fasting rules that you will be given when you receive your appointment details. Remove jewelry; most importantly rings and piercings in your tongue or genitals. Do not use alcohol or drugs (48 hours before treatment) and do not smoke (24 hours before treatment).

Bring with you:

  • ID card
  • EHIC or travel insurance
  • Referral letter or ultrasound documents
  • Comfortable clothing (bathrobe, pajamas, flip flops or warm socks, and comfortable underwear) + sanitary pads

At the day of the procedure

Translation - People from all over the world visit Dutch abortion clinics. A lot of their information is available in different languages (English, German, French, Polish). If you speak no, or little English, the doctor or nurses can call a translator. Many of our clients report back after the procedure that all staff members were very friendly and that they did not experience problems with communication.

Check in - You will first check in at the reception where you will be asked to fill out a medical questionnaire. 

Examination and consultation with doctor - The doctor will perform an ultrasound to confirm the term of the pregnancy. Depending on the current COVID rules, you can or cannot bring your partner. In either case, you will always have a moment alone with the doctor to ensure your choice to have an abortion is not being forced by anyone. The doctor might ask why you want to end the pregnancy. Please note that there is no wrong answer to that question.

Preparation - A nurse will come and get you from the waiting room. You can ask any practical questions or express fear or needs to this person. The nurse will bring you to the ward, which you share with other clients. A shower is available in case you need one after long travels. You will be given a cannula and receive medication to prime your cervix. The priming medication (misoprostol) needs 1 hour (if the pregnancy is less than 18 weeks) or 2-3 hours (if the pregnancy is more than 18 weeks). 

Blood test - Your blood type (AB0 neg/pos) will be determined. In case your Rhesus factor is negative (AB0 neg) you will receive extra medication after the procedure. 

Procedure - The procedure takes place in a separate room and will be performed by the doctor you have seen during the consultation. Sedation (light anesthesia) will be used for any term of pregnancy less than 13 weeks, which means you will be asleep and not experience any pain. The procedure will take 25 mins maximum. 

Recovery room - In the recovery room you will receive antibiotics to prevent infections. In case your blood type is Rhesus negative, you will get an anti-D injection. You will stay in the recovery room until you are awake, there is a normal amount of blood loss and the pain is bearable. 

Returning home - Many clients return home the same day. Alternatively, you could spend a night in a nearby hotel. For up to 24 hours after the procedure, you are not allowed to drive a car, as there is still some sedation medication in your blood. 

Aftercare

Vaginal blood loss - It is normal to experience vaginal blood loss after the procedure. For the first few days it can be as much, or even more, than during your period. It usually decreases over each day and will turn into brownish discharge. It can occur for a total duration of up to 2 weeks.

Prevent infection - To prevent infections, do not use tampons, don’t take baths (showers are fine) and do not have penetrative sex after the procedure, while you still have bright red blood loss. When the blood loss has turned brownish, there are no restrictions.

Pain - You can experience pain after the procedure, similar to menstruation cramps. You can take painkillers to ease the pain; take paracetamol (up to 4x 1000mg per day, called APAP in Poland) and/or ibuprofen (up to 3x 400mg per day, called Ibuprom or Nurofen in Poland). 

Swollen breasts - With advanced terms of pregnancy (over 16 weeks), your breast might swell and produce milk after the procedure. To prevent painful swelling and infection in your breasts (mastitis), it is advised to wear a tight bra that puts pressure on your breasts. If this does not help and the painful swelling does not disappear, ask your local doctor to prescribe medication that stops milk production (Dostinex). 

Menstrual cycle and fertility - Only in very rare cases can the abortion procedures impact your future fertility and pregnancy (e.g. difficulty getting pregnant when many adhesions appear in the cavity of the womb or preterm birth when the carrying capacity of your cervix is diminished by multiple procedures). Your menstrual cycle will restart when the pregnancy hormone has entirely vanished from your body. You can expect your next period 4-6 weeks after the procedure. Note that you will be fertile even before this first period, so take contraceptive measures to prevent a next pregnancy if needed. If you have the wish to get pregnant again soon; please ask your local caregiver for advice on the pregnancy-to-pregnancy interval as this differs per individual.

When you must seek help - If you have had an abortion please go to your doctor if you experience any of the following: 

  • Pain not responding to painkillers as described above
  • Vaginal blood loss which is more than a period for over one week or when it takes longer than 2 weeks to stop
  • Fever in combination with cramps and/or when the fever cannot be explained by flu/covid/cold etc

What to tell your doctor in your home country - It is completely legal to undergo an abortion abroad, so you can share your abortion story with your local doctor or anyone else. If in any case you do not want your doctor to know that you have had an abortion, you can tell them that you have had a spontaneous miscarriage; they cannot tell the difference from your symptoms or by physical examination.

More questions?

For more details see our Important Information page. If your question is not answered there or you need ANA’s help, send us an email.