There had been doubts about the availability of services

The Health Minister has assured women that safe and legal abortion services WILL be available from New Year's Day.

There had been doubts about the availability of services, with reports that just nine hospitals and 145 GPs have so far signed up to provide medical abortions.

Information will be available on MyOptions dot ie.While a freephone helpline - 1800 828 010 - will open on January 1st.

Simon Harris says: 'It is going to take time to full embed and our services will continue to evolve and grow during the course of the year, but it is important for women to know, particularly women who are pregnant today and maybe in crisis that there will be safe services freely and legally available in this country from the 1st of January'.