The British medical journal, Lancet, today focuses on maternal health. Sedgh, Henshaw, Singh, Åhman, and Shah write that:
An estimated 42 million abortions were induced in 2003, compared with 46 million in 1995. The induced abortion rate in 2003 was 29 per 1000 women aged 15–44 years, down from 35 in 1995. Abortion rates were lowest in western Europe (12 per 1000 women). Rates were 17 per 1000 women in northern Europe, 18 per 1000 women in southern Europe, and 21 per 1000 women in northern America (USA and Canada). In 2003, 48% of all abortions worldwide were unsafe, and more than 97% of all unsafe abortions were in developing countries. There were 31 abortions for every 100 livebirths worldwide in 2003, and this ratio was highest in eastern Europe (105 for every 100 livebirths).