As hospitals across Canada begin cancelling and postponing surgeries to contend with the spread of COVID-19 , provinces and territories have deemed abortions an essential service.As the news broke that hospitals were suspending non-urgent and elective surgeries and procedures both in Canada and abroad, stories emerged of abortion access being impeded. In both Texas and Ohio, lawmakers listed abortions among nonessential surgeries and medical procedures that would be delayed to free up resources for the fight against COVID-19. Health care is under provincial and territorial jurisdiction, meaning that the extent to which surgeries and procedures are being cancelled vary across Canada. However, while all provinces and territories have placed new limits on the kinds of surgeries and procedures being provided, they've confirmed to CTVNews.ca that regular abortion access will continue. Newsletter sign-up: Get The COVID-19 Brief sent to your inbox Rolanda Ryan, owner of the Athena Health Centre, an abortion clinic in St. John's, N.L., welcomed the news. "The people leading us here in the province absolutely see it as an essential service, because it's time sensitive and it's medical necessary," Ryan said. "The worst case scenario, if we closed our doors, is somebody trying to do it themselves…in places in the world where abortion is illegal and unacceptable, women die." She explained that not having access to abortion does not mean it doesn't happen. "People who want an abortion will put their lives on the line to get one, and you want to make sure that if it's being done, it's being done safely," Ryan said. CTVNews.ca reached out to every province and territory to confirm whether abortion services would be impacted. Here's what they said. British Columbia The province has cancelled elective surgeries, but will continue to provide access to abortions. "Urgent and emergency procedures are continuing at BC Women's Hospital + Health Centre. Non-urgent procedures are being postponed, as appropriate," said Vincent Chou, a spokesperson for the Provincial Health Services Authority. "We continue to deliver [babies], perform C-sections and terminations, along with any other emergency and urgent procedures." Alberta While Alberta Health Services has cancelled all non-urgent surgeries and procedures across its facilities, abortion access remains unimpeded. "With regards to surgical abortions performed in AHS hospitals, these are not considered elective surgeries. They are urgent/emergent," said Kerry Williamson, a spokesperson for Alberta Health Services. Saskatchewan Saskatchewan has cancelled all elective surgeries and procedures, but the province does not consider abortion to be an elective procedure. "Termination of pregnancy is not considered an elective procedure and will continue to be offered," said Doug Dahl, a communications officer with the Saskatchewan Health Authority. However, he encouraged those seeking a termination to explore the possibility of having a medical abortion, where clinically appropriate. He said this is an effort to promote social distancing, as a medical abortion terminates a pregnancy with pills instead of a surgical procedure. Manitoba The province has opted to delay some elective surgeries in order to free up resources to fight COVID-19. "We are not suspending abortions. Abortions are not considered elective. They are time-sensitive and proceeding as planned," said Paul Turenne, a spokesperson for the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority. Ontario Ontario, in consultation with the Ontario Hospital Association, has asked its hospitals to ramp down elective surgeries in order to free up the capacity to deal with the COVID-19 outbreak. "Each hospital will make its own decisions about specific procedures, taking into consideration the advice and recommendations of a patient’s physician and their individual needs," said Hayley Chazan, a spokesperson for Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott. When asked about abortions specifically, Chazan said the government is "not involved in the clinical decision-making of any procedure." So as long as clinics are willing to stay open to provide abortion access, Ontario has no plans to stop them. Quebec Quebec, as a part of its pandemic plan, has postponed elective surgeries, but it is maintaining abortion access. "Access to abortion is maintained for any woman who requests it. There are no plans to discontinue these services," said Marie-Claude Lacasse, the press secretary for Quebec's Health Minister Danielle McCann. Nova Scotia The Nova Scotia Health Authority has suspended and cancelled many of its services as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, but it will continue to provide abortion access. "The Women's Choice Clinic remains open as an essential service to provide surgical and medical abortions," said Brendan Elliott, a spokesperson for the Halifax Infirmary. New Brunswick Health care providers in New Brunswick have cancelled all non-urgent services, including elective surgeries and outpatient services. "Emergency and urgent cases, such as traumas and cancer care, will continue. Abortion services will continue as well," said Geri Geldart, who is vice-president of clinical at New Brunswick’s Horizon Health Network. P.E.I. Canada's smallest province has suspended elective and scheduled surgeries, with the exception of cancer-related surgeries, elective cesarean sections and any surgery that would cause harm to a patient if not performed within 21 days. "Abortions are considered an essential service and have not been affected. However, the supply of providers (some travelled from outside P.E.I. to help) has decreased when the demand on this essential service continue to be the same. We are reassured, at this stage, that this is not resulting in any cancellations or delays," said Everton McLean, a senior communications officer with Health P.E.I. Newfoundland and Labrador While some of the health authorities in Newfoundland and Labrador have cancelled elective surgeries and are only completing urgent and emergency services, abortion services continue to be offered at the Athena Health Centre in St. John's. "Abortion in Canada, I think across the country, will remain an accessible service. We're here if you need the care," said Ryan, who owns the Centre. Yukon Yukon has three hospitals, but only one undertakes surgeries -- the Whitehorse General Hospital. That hospital has suspended all scheduled, non-urgent procedures. "Therapeutic abortions are still being provided," said Patricia Living, a spokesperson for Yukon Health and Social Services. Northwest Territories The Northwest Territories have suspended non-urgent and elective surgeries of all types, as well as endoscopic procedures. "Abortion services, both medical and surgical, are being maintained. We consider this an essential service," said a spokesperson for the territorial government. Nunavut Nunavut has decided to cancel all routine surgeries in its effort to combat the COVID-19 outbreak. "Therapeutic abortions continue as they are considered an essential service," said Chris Puglia, a spokesperson for the Nunavut Department of Health. RELATED IMAGES Read more: CTV News
Would be awesome to have a pandemic baby. Because people are dying and adding to that number is a good idea? It's a woman's right, to have an abortion! Wow Brian, look at you go. Using all your vast medical and social knowledge to make decisions for women across our great land. Is there anything you would like to impose upon me? With all your worldly knowledge?
Baby killers still have to work lol ... Cancer surgeries are being postponed and abortions are not? Who sets the priorities here? It isn't the feminist JustinTrudeau, is it? Aren't those medical resources that could be put to better use right now? Murder as usual. But some cancer patient ops stop. Yea, we'll find favour with God on that move.
If your distancing, people shouldn’t be getting pregnant. Am I wrong? Gotta make sure they continue their sacrifice to Satan
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What the heck Canada? 😡And I (pregnant) can’t even get in to get my blood work done because it’s not essential. Good Abortions are NOT essential! Why is this news? It’s kind of an essential service that doesn’t take away ventilators. Maybe this will be news in the US but not in Canada. Shame on you for trying to create a problem that is not in Canada.
Sure on one side we try and save a soul and then on the other we kill a soul. I'm far from left....but every women should have the choice...in a free country.. Of course murdering babies won't stop . Yet my prenatal appointments are restricted, and significantly less frequent. Ok? Wtf why Wow , a new low for Canada and it’s murdering industry. Shameful
Canada to help world's poor cope with COVID-19, amid UN appeal: aid ministerInternational Development Minister Karina Gould says Canada will spend millions to help the world's most desperate people fight COVID-19 because it is in the country's long-term security interest as well as being the right thing to do. Why? Why are we sending money anywhere but Canadians? We're already pulling almost $100 billion out of thin air, why are we printing more money to send to the third world? Why? Canada has done its part already. We need a 'Canada First' policy. Canada is about to BECOME the World's poor with this.
Disgusting... we should be concentrating on saving lives! So is access to many other medical procedures that don't deplete resources required to treat COVID-19. Not reporting on those? Why not? Cancer surgeries are being postponed and abortions are not? Who sets the priorities here? It isn't the feminist JustinTrudeau, is it?
Good. Abortion is an emergency. Doesn’t make any sense we are destroying are economy to save life and they want to kill lives. And they are telling people this is an essential service. CampaignLife ProLife My heart weeps. I always enjoy the male professional opinions on this matter lol Breathing access may be more sporadic.
Looks like they have to go to Iowa to have their prescriptions filled. ;-P Disgusting
COVID-19 in Canada: This is how each province is handling the pandemicWhile Prime Minister Justin Trudeau hasn't ruled out invoking war-time measures to handle COVID-19 in Canada, he has so far deferred to the emergency measures invoked by provincial governments. Here's a look at how the provinces are responding. Hey , your COVID-19 coverage has been quite excellent. Thank you. I still haven't quite forgiven you for 'The Trouble with Tracy' yet but I'm renowned for holding a grudge. This daily update from Dr. Bonnie Henry & adriandix is my go to for the straight goods on COVID19BC. No spin. Calm, fact-based delivery with absolute clarity on what's being done...& why. Here's the March 24th briefing:
of course, the globalists don't want Canadians they want immigrants... I guess the virus isn't killing people fast enough. 🙄 It makes complete sense in a Trudeauian world. Oh thank goodness. We need to be able to kill babies so that the virus doesn’t get them first. But you're cancelling surgeries for people with cancer?
And yet they cancel Cancer surgeries 🤦♂️ Thank goodness Make the conservatives cry, give them diapers too. Best use of medical resources during a global pandemic.
Canada to slash number of troops stationed in Ukraine until COVID-19 pandemic is overThe training mission was launched in 2015 after Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula and started to support separatist forces in Ukraine This is sad.... Everyone running home. Is that what this is ultimately about?
Distilleries across Canada fight COVID-19 by making hand sanitizerWith customers having retreated to their homes in the wake of COVID-19 , distilleries across North America are finding a new way to serve the public: by using their facilities and high-proof alcohol to make hand sanitizer. That's just great. Apparently they've been doing that for weeks, and yet toilet paper is easier to find than hand sanitizer. How do people get their hands on this? (No pun intended) WashYourHands COVID19AB MoonshineCreekDistillery in Waterville NB is producing hand sanitizer too! They're the 'Chicken Bones Liqueur' guys.
Bank of Canada says retailers shouldn't refuse cash amid COVID-19 outbreakThe Bank of Canada is encouraging retailers to continue to accept cash, despite ramped-up health precautions by all levels of government to thwart the spread of COVID-19 . Give me a break. Still use cash and debit but when machines go down I still can get what need as I always have cash so to each his or her own They all are