In 1939, abortion was legal only to save a woman’s life. The law was widened in 1956 to include medical and social grounds. A further revision in 1970 allowed any woman over 38, and those with four or more living children, access to abortion.

The law of June 1973, made Denmark the first Western European country to permit abortion on request during the first twelve weeks of pregnancy. While abortion is restricted when the pregnancy is past three months, in practice, about 90% of request for abortions at 13-16 weeks are approved.

County health boards are responsible for providing services and each county has at least one hospital performing abortions.