If you’re looking for legal abortion services or safe, reliable sexual healthcare services, you’ve probably come across the Marie Stopes name.
However, not all clinics referring to themselves as ‘Marie Stopes’ really are legitimate, HPCSA-endorsed Marie Stopes South Africa (MSSA) centres. So how can you be sure you’re in safe hands?
How to ensure you’re using a real, trustworthy Marie Stopes centre
When you’re searching online for safe, legal abortions, or sexual healthcare services like pap smears, contraceptive advice and/or STI and HIV screening, look for a provider that has a landline telephone number and a fixed address. All real MSSA centres have both of these.
Next, if a website seems overly flashy and/or doesn’t list specific details about the centre it’s advertising, avoid it! If there’s only a mobile phone number, or if they offer to deliver abortion pills to your home, or to anyone over 20 weeks of pregnancy, watch out: you’re probably dealing with an illegal abortion provider.
Why do people illegally use the Marie Stopes name?
Marie Stopes is trusted across South Africa to provide safe, legal abortions, and has a solid reputation for providing caring, confidential and high quality services. Illegal service providers steal our name because they know that people who are desperate for help will trust the Marie Stopes brand to provide the best possible care. That’s why it’s critical to ensure you’re using a real MSSA centre.
How to identify a real Marie Stopes centre
First of all, you can view a list of all Marie Stopes centres in South Africa.
Next, as mentioned above, all Marie Stopes centres have a physical address and a landline telephone number. All clinics have a full staff of nurses and doctors who follow correct medical procedures and wear uniforms. We don’t offer home services or deliveries – you have to come in and see us, ideally making an appointment first.
You’ll also find a full range of sexual healthcare services at all of our centres – view our services here.