Who Can Have an Abortion in Singapore?

The termination of pregnancy, also known as an abortion, has been legal in Singapore since 1970. By 1974, the Abortion Act was further expanded, allowing women to access abortion services regardless of reason. As such, abortions are not only legal but very safe as well, but only if the procedure was done by a skilled and licensed doctor in an accredited hospital or clinic.

While abortion services are readily available in Singapore, those who are considering the procedure should first be eligible. Those who can get an abortion in the country meet any of the following criteria:

  • Singaporean citizen, or married to a Singaporean citizen;
  • Holder of a work permit issued by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), or married to a holder of a work permit issued by the MOM;
  • Residing in Singapore for at least four months before the scheduled date of abortion; or
  • Under exceptional circumstances, specifically if an abortion is immediately necessary to save the life of the pregnant woman.

Apart from the abovementioned requirements, a pregnant woman who is considering an abortion should know that an abortion is only legal if the pregnancy does not exceed 24 weeks. In some cases, a late-term pregnancy may be done but only if it can be proven that continuing with the pregnancy poses a danger to the health and life of the pregnant woman, and if the foetus is diagnosed with a serious chromosomal abnormality.

Additionally, women who wish to have an abortion is required to attend mandatory counseling, after which a period of 48 hours takes place as a cooling off period, which allows the woman to further make a final decision. Once the 48 hours is done, she can proceed with the procedure. 

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