The number of abortions carried out in England and Wales has increased by 4.1 per cent since the start of the coronavirus pandemic when compared with the same period last year.
New figures have shown that between January and June this year there were 109,836 abortions carried out, compared with 105,540 over the first six months of 2019.
The Government introduced temporary legislation at the start of the pandemic to allow women to gain easier access to medical termination in their own homes.
This comes amid warnings that hundreds of thousands of women have lost access to contraception amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
The first month of lockdown saw the sharpest rise in abortions, with 20,546 carried out when compared with 16,006 in April last year - an increase of more than 4,500.
The number of abortions carried out in England and Wales increased by 4.1 per cent since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic compared with last year (file photo)
But in May and June this year, there were fewer abortions when compared with the same months in 2019.
The statistics, which were published by the Department of Health and Social Care on Thursday, showed that 86 per cent of terminations were carried out at less than 10 weeks in the first six months of 2020.
This compares with 81 per cent from January to June the previous year.
And almost 50 per cent of all abortions in the first half of this year were conducted before seven weeks gestation, up from around 40 per cent in 2019.
Medical abortions, where the woman is given two oral medications to end the pregnancy, accounted for 82 per cent of the total between January and June 2020.
This figure had jumped up by ten per cent when compared to the same period last year.
The number of medical abortions that were conducted before 10 weeks gestation remained similar to the first six months of 2019, with the figure standing at 96 per cent this year.
Before the coronavirus lockdown, women were required to attend a clinic for the first phase of a medical abortion.
But on March 30, the Government introduced temporary legislation to allow the first medicine to be administered at home and in the homes of medical practitioners.
Government statistics found that the first month of lockdown saw the sharpest rise in abortions, with an increase of more than 4,500