The Gains of the New Constitution: Stronger Protections for the Lives and Health of Women in Kenya

Kenya’s new constitution demonstrates several gains for the women of Kenya, including stronger protections for their health and lives. The constitution affirms that every person has the right to the highest attainable standard of health, including the right to health services and reproductive healthcare.  It also ensures that a person shall not be denied emergency medical treatment, which includes necessary medical treatment for women seeking post-abortion care or emergency abortion services, regardless of their ability to pay for such services. Furthermore, the constitution clarifies the confusing patchwork of law, policies, and regulations on abortion by spelling out that women are able to terminate a pregnancy when it threatens their life or health.  This fact sheet explains these provisions of Kenya’s new constitution and their significance for protecting women’s health and lives.