Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

The following are a series of general questions most often asked by our Patients either over the phone or on arrival at the Clinic.

If you require information specific to either of our services (Abortion or Contraception), please contact us direct on  FREE CALL 1800 802 562.

We hope that these may assist you in some way and if there is anything else we can do to assist you please do not hesitate to Contact Us.

General

Can I become pregnant whilst using contraception?

Even when used correctly and consistently, all contraceptive methods can fail. There are two types of contraceptive failures: user failure and method failure.

Can a female under the age of 16 access an abortion?

In Queensland, females under the age of 16 can access an abortion but are preferred to have a legal guardian present. This is not necessary however due to a legal precedent set by the Fraser Competence Ruling. Terminations of pregnancies performed on a young person without parental consent is at the discretion of each individual abortion provider.

In some circumstances, if a person under the age of 18 refuses to consent to a procedure, parents or the court can overrule their decision.

At present, regulations exist on procedures performed on day surgeries on patients under the age of 14.

Is surgical abortion safe?

Even though abortion is a surgical procedure with minimal risks and complications, the first trimester (before 12 weeks) D&C procedure (Dilation and Curettage) that we perform is relatively minor and extremely safe.

Will I need someone to drive me?

If you are having a surgical termination or a contraceptive procedure with anaesthetic, you will need someone to drive you home. In Australia, you are not legally insured to drive or operate a vehicle for 24 hours following an anaesthetic.

How long does the procedure take?

The procedure is relatively quick, only lasting for approximately 10 minutes. However, you will be at our clinic for 3 – 6 hours in total.

Will having an abortion affect my chances of conceiving in the future?

Surgical abortion is 20 times safer than childbirth when the procedure is performed in the first trimester. Infections are the greatest threat to fertility, NOT abortion.

Will there be protestors at the clinic when I arrive?

Protestors are entitled by law to rally their opinions on matters. We do experience protestors on occasions at the front of our clinic. They generally protest on the council land near Logan Road so we cannot do anything to move them out of that area. However, if they are on our property or approach you and talk to you, we can have the police arrest them.

Can I get financial help for your services?

You can call Children by Choice (1800 177 725) who may be able to assist you financially. Financial assistance is not guaranteed and is based on individual circumstances.

If I have had a surgical termination and have taken a pregnancy test that has turned up positive, does this mean I am still pregnant?

Pregnancy tests can still be positive for up to two weeks following a surgical termination.

How can it be too early to have an abortion?

In order to have an abortion, your physician must be able to confirm that there is a pregnancy in your uterus. At Greenslopes Day Surgery, we use an ultrasound to confirm the pregnancy. If you are too early in the pregnancy, it may be too small to be detected or seen on the ultrasound. At this stage, the likelihood of missing all or part of the pregnancy tissue is high and can result in an incomplete abortion. In order to avoid this, we ask that you wait until you are at least 5 weeks into the pregnancy, when the pregnancy becomes visible on an ultrasound.

In addition, we will need to confirm that the pregnancy is in the uterus before attempting a termination. In rare cases, the pregnancy may be developing outside of the uterus or in one of the fallopian tubes. This is called an ectopic pregnancy, and may require immediate emergency care. Using an ultrasound before your procedure will help us to rule out the possibility of an ectopic pregnancy before starting your procedure.

Is it safe to have more than one abortion?

Yes, having an abortion is very safe.  An abortion procedure in the first trimester is considerably safer than bearing a child. While there are risks with an abortion procedure every time you have one, there is no research that shows having more than one abortion procedure will cause increased risk to you, your future health, or your fertility.

However, pregnancy in general does carry risks and having many pregnancies – regardless of whether the pregnancies end in abortion or not – may increase some of these risks.  Because of this, it is extremely important that you share your health history and a detailed pregnancy history with your medical provider to ensure that you are receiving the highest quality of care for your individual needs.

What will I feel emotionally after my procedure?

Women express a wide range of feelings after an abortion. From sadness to relief and from anger to grief, a mix of emotions is normal.  There is no right or wrong way to feel after an abortion.  It is important that you consider your feelings carefully and try not to ignore them. If you find that you would like help in coping with any emotions that you are experiencing after your abortion, we can refer you to expert counselling services who are free of charge.

Money Questions

How much does it cost?

The cost depends on the gestation of your pregnancy i.e. how many weeks pregnant you are (Termination prices start at $345) When you contact the clinic we can give you the details of the costs involved for either Abortion and or Contraception. Patients seeking counselling and referral services on all unplanned pregnancy options - abortion, parenting and adoption, including financial assistance, should contact Children By Choice for further advice.

Please be aware that costs for a termination increase considerably the later the procedure is conducted. GSDS only operates up to 16 weeks, and if later specialist advice will be provided.

Can I use my private health cover?

Yes you can, it does depend if you have hospital cover and what your excess is. We can check it for you; just give your details when you make the appointment for either procedure.

Is there a discount for Single Parent Pension (SPP) or Health Care Card (HCC)?

There is a discount if you hold a current concession card (SPP/HCC), depending on the procedure. However, if you are over a certain time (12 weeks) in your pregnancy, unfortunately we can not use the concession.

Do I get any money back from Medicare?

GSDS is a private clinic so while we do bulk bill some of the procedures, there are out of pocket expenses for either service.

What if I don't have Medicare?

Unfortunately, we have to charge you the full amount for any service we provide. If you are a student / international non resident and have overseas private cover, we can give you an itemised account that you can take to your fund as you may be able to claim some money back.

Procedure Questions

Do I need a referral from my doctor?

You do not need a referral, however, if you have a referral we would like you to bring it with you on the day of your appointment. We will need your doctors contact information and a copy of your blood group. If you don't have your blood group we can do it at the clinic for you.

Does it hurt?

The majority of women who have Termination of Pregnancy say they are very comfortable during their time at the clinic as the procedure is very quick.  Some women do experience cramping similar to period pain and need mild painkillers. Please Contact Us to discuss any concerns you may have.

Am I asleep for the procedure?

We offer a "twilight" sedation, so you are asleep for either procedure which takes about ten minutes.  If you would prefer another type of anaesthetic you can discuss it with the doctor on the day of the procedure.

How long do I have to be at the clinic?

Depending on the procedure the duration of your stay could be between four and six hours-including after care and various consultations with the doctors.  

When can I go back to work?

After a termination of pregnancy, you may return to work the following day. A medical certificate may be provided if required for the day.

Where can I get more information about the decisions I have to make?

You can ring Children by Choice if you feel you need more help making your decision.

How many weeks do you go up to?

GSDS specialise in termination (abortion) of pregnancy up to 16 weeks. Any procedure after 16 weeks requires specialist advice available from this clinic.

When do you start doing terminations?

GSDS conducts procedures from 5 weeks, which can be determined by ultrasound at the Clinic.  

 

Clinic Questions

All of the questions and answers below relate and apply to both types of services carried out by GSDS.

Are you an accredited facility?

GSDS is an accredited facility and operates in accordance with The Australian Council on Healthcare Standards EQuIP 4 for Day Hospitals.

Is it all confidential? I.e "is there any chance of someone finding out that I have had an abortion?"

GSDS has strict policies regarding privacy and compliance with the Act.  No personal information is disclosed over the phone.

What days do you operate?

We operate Monday to Friday. The office is open between 8.00am and 4.00pm Monday to Friday for enquiries and Appointments.

Can I have someone with me?

It is nice to have a support person to accompany you up until you are processed at the clinic. Due to the privacy of all patients including yourself, your support person cannot go into recovery areas. Out of respect for other patients, please DO NOT bring infants nor children to the clinic. They will not be allowed to enter the facility.

Surgical versus Medical Abortion

In summary, the decision to have an abortion or continue a pregnancy is not a simple or easy one and it's important to take the time to make the best choice between a medical or surgical abortion. The gestation of the pregnancy may mean that only one abortion option is available. If you choose to end your pregnancy, and it has been nine weeks or less since your last period, you may be able to have a medical abortion.

Simply ask yourself the following questions:

If you would feel more comfortable with carrying out a miscarriage at home, live close by to a clinic which offers a medical abortion, do not like surgery or have qualms of being under sedation and less than 9 weeks in gestation, a MEDICAL ABORTION may be the best option for you.

However, if you would rather have an abortion completed in a once off, single visit to a facility, have ready access to a medical provider which offers surgical abortions, not fazed by either surgery or anaesthetic procedure, then a SURGICAL ABORTION may be the best option for you in a difficult situation.

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