Limited Abortion Care Training Opportunities
The opportunities to learn about abortion in medical school are limited. Even at institutions that provide some abortion education, students are oftentimes responsible for seeking out opportunities for exposure and training. This is unheard of for many other commonplace procedures.
Opportunities for additional training outside of medical curricula exist. In 1993, Medical Students For Choice was founded to create “tomorrow’s abortion providers and pro-choice physicians.” The organization provides opportunities for students to attend trainings on abortion care, and students can apply to get clinical experience working with clinicians who provide this care. Even so, the program only provides training for a small number of students: In 2021, 41 medical students and 13 residents were able to participate in these clinical electives (in part because of some limitations due to COVID-19). This program was a success in that participants stated they were more likely to practice abortion care after their participation. But with such small numbers of participants, programs like these are no substitute for systemic change.