Sexual and Reproductive Health

Responding to emerging opportunities: building the case for investment in sexual and reproductive healthcare (SRH).

In 2022, drawing on the latest data released by Women’s Health Victoria, WHG compiled a comprehensive review on access to abortion and long acting contraception services in the Grampians region. This review evidenced the shortfall between services provided and services received by local government area (LGA):

  • Of 11 rural and regional LGAs across Victoria that have NO early medical abortion service provision, 7 of these are in the Grampians region.
  • The patient rate of early medical abortion was higher than the state average in 9 out of 11 LGAs in our region.
  • The rate of GP prescribers and Pharmacy dispensers of early medical abortion in our region is the lowest in Victoria.
  • Patient demand for IUD (7.0) is double the rate of local services provided (3.3).
  • Patient demand for Implanon is significantly higher than local service provision in 5 LGAs.

It is critically important for health professionals and planners to understand the significance of this data and the potential impact on women seeking care across our region.

By sharing this current, place-based data we have been successful in engaging the Grampians Public Health Unit, with sexual and reproductive health now included as a priority within their region-wide catchment plan. This represents a strong leadership position and has given SRH unprecedented equal standing with the Healthy Eating, Active Living and Tobacco priority areas. This partnership work is ongoing and WHG will continue to participate in Steering Committee meetings to contribute to locally relevant solutions.

Adding our rural and regional voice to the Federal Senate Inquiry into Universal Access to Reproductive Healthcare

One priority of the National Women’s Health Strategy is universal access to sexual and reproductive health information, treatment and services that offer options to women to empower choice and control in decision-making about their bodies. As part of our advocacy WHG made a submission (no.130) to the Senate inquiry into universal access to reproductive healthcare calling for more investment in the regional health workforce, including training and accountability mechanisms, to enable more women to access what is an essential service.

Conference: SexRurality

SexRurality is an inspiring conference full of people passionate about improving access to sexual and reproductive services and education in regional Victoria. WHG’s Shannon Hill and Rose Durey were proud to contribute presentations on normalising abortion, rural condom stigma and the Victorian Gender Equality Act.

SRH on the road


Clammy, our chlamydia mascot, took a road trip across the Wimmera in 2022 to raise awareness about high STI rates and check in on condom availability. We use this information to connect with local services and tailor our advocacy efforts.

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