France: Reproductive Health Care Now Free

As of April 1, women in France who need an abortion can get one without worrying about whether they can afford it. The government will pay 100 percent of the cost. The legislation also includes a measure to pay for the total cost of contraception for adolescent girls age 15 to 18. Both initiatives fulfill the promise of France's new president, François Hollande, to strengthen reproductive rights and health care, with a goal of reducing the country's rate of abortion, according to New Europe Online, which spoke with the Center's president and CEO, Nancy Northup:

[In] recent decades there are numerous evidence which establish "an inextricable link between the availability of safe, legal means of ending a pregnancy and the fulfillment of women's right to health," said Northup.

Listen to Johanna Westeson, the Center's Regional Director for Europe, talk about both the benefits of this law as well as some of the challenges other European countries face in an interview on ABC Radio National.