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If you’re planning to start a family or think you may be pregnant – whether it’s planned or unplanned – we’re here to help.


If you’re planning to start a family or think you may be pregnant – whether it’s planned or unplanned – we’re here to help.

We’ve a range of support to help you identify the path that’s right for you.

Planned Pregnancy

Deciding to have a baby is an exciting time and its natural to have some questions about conceiving and pregnancy.  Although we are not midwives, we can support with advice around stopping your contraception and predicated return of fertility, along with maximising your physical and mental health.

After your baby is born, we can support your choice of contraceptive method to suit your busy lifestyle of a new Mummy.

Unplanned Pregnancy

The decision to not continue with a pregnancy can be a very difficult and personal one, regardless of your circumstances.

It can be a very stressful time of mixed emotions and a feeling of pressure from other people’s opinions and views. It is important to remember whatever your decision the only person who can make the right decision for you is you!

You do not need to be alone during this time as there is support available to guide you through all your options. Marie Stopes internal support line is available 24 hours a day 365 days a year.

You do not need to see your GP or attend our clinics to be referred for a termination of pregnancy, you can self-refer as below. If you would like support to contact these services we can assist with this.

Termination of Pregnancy

The decision to end a pregnancy is a difficult one. People choose to end a pregnancy for lots of reasons. It might be because they don’t want children, or aren’t financially able to support a child. It might also be because it would be medically unsafe for them to have a baby. Whatever the reason for this it is the individual’s choice and right to do so and receive confidential and safe medical care.

If you wish to have a termination please see which option is better for you –

  • If you live in the Colchester, Chelmsford or Thurrock area you can self-refer to Marie Stopes International (MSI) on or call 0345 300 8090.
  • If you live in the Harlow area and wish to use Marie Stopes International (MSI) please call us on 0300 003 1212 and book an appointment an appointment at The Stow where we can refer you to them.
  • If you live in The Harlow area and are up to 12 weeks pregnant, termination of pregnancy is available at Princess Alexandra Hospital, please call the Early Pregnancy Unit on 01279 82 7107. The clinic takes place on a Wednesday only. Details of this clinic can be found at

We are there to talk if you have any concerns. If you need help call us on 0300 003 1212

You can find information on termination of pregnancy from:


Clear answers to common questions

Contacting a sexual health service for the first time may be a little daunting, especially if you’re not keen on talking to someone. So, here are answers to some of the questions we get asked a lot.

You’ll be asked a few simple questions to understand your circumstances and the support you may need.

There is no rush, so take your time.

We will support you in whatever way you need.

This may include talking through your situation, giving advice, helping you access things like protection or contraception, or organising a STI test.

We provide a quick and discreet STI self-testing kits for many of the most common infections.

If a different test is needed, we’ll help you with booking a confidential appointment at a local clinic.

You may be invited to a confidential physical examination at one of our clinics, where a doctor will undertake any examination that’s needed.

You’ll be asked in advance if you are comfortable with the examination.

No one. Both your appointment and test result are completely confidential.

Your information is stored in a sexual health services medical record and is only shared with your GP or other professional if you agree.

If you do need to take a test, many can be taken from the comfort of your home by ordering one of our self-test kits – others may require a visit to a sexual health clinic.

You may be asked to provide either a urine or swab sample of the infected area or a blood sample may be needed in some cases. This will be explained before the test.

Firstly, please don’t worry, we deal with STIs all the time and almost all are now treatable.

You’ll be contacted by a professional to discuss your results and given advice on the treatment you may need.

In addition, we will offer any counselling and other forms of support you may need.


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