pregnant woman
Updated 2023-01-22 11:56

As an expat in Malta, you will experience some important life events, such as pregnancy. As an expectant mother, you will find a good healthcare system in Malta. From the pregnancy test to the follow-up and giving birth, you will find out in this article what to expect in Malta.

You live in Malta and find yourself pregnant or suspect to be. Congratulations! Malta is still a conservative country regarding pregnancy. In case of unwanted pregnancy, abortion is still forbidden in Malta, but there are some solutions.

Pregnancy test in Malta

If you suspect to be pregnant, you should take a pregnancy test. Start with a home pregnancy test. These tests are accurate and can be found in all pharmacies and even some supermarkets. Some tests can even tell you how many weeks you have been pregnant.

If the test is positive, you are likely to be pregnant. Confirm the result with a blood test. Visit your general practitioner or gynecologist.

If the home pregnancy test is negative but you still have pregnancy symptoms, consider taking another one and, eventually, a blood test.

The morning-after pill in Malta

The morning-after pill is an emergency contraception used when the usual contraception has failed or in case of unprotected sex. The sooner you take it, the greater the chances of avoiding pregnancy. In Malta, each pharmacy has the choice to distribute it or not, because of ethical reasons (the country being conservative regarding pregnancy). It is common that the pharmacist asks some questions before you buy a morning-after pill in Malta. You will find the list of the pharmacies with the morning-after pill in stock here.

Good to know:

The morning-after pill is not an abortion pill. It is a hormonal contraceptive. If you take it while you are already pregnant, it will not harm your pregnancy and will not cause an abortion.

What to do on becoming pregnant in Malta

If your pregnancy test is positive, contact your family doctor or general practitioner for an initial examination. Afterward, you will need to choose a gynecologist or obstetrician. They usually work in clinics or hospitals, private or public.

The interdiction of abortion in Malta

Abortion is prohibited in Malta. The country is, in fact, conservative. This ban is explained by the application of the Catholic religion (which is the state religion in Malta). According to the Criminal Code in Malta, women terminating their pregnancy are liable to fines and imprisonment for a term from eighteen months to three years. Unfortunately, there are no exceptions, even in case of severe fetal anomaly, pregnancy resulting from rape, or if the pregnant person's physical or mental health or even life is at risk.

There is an evolving public debate about this issue. More and more people in Malta rise their voices to denounce the interdiction of abortion.

If you are pregnant in Malta and wish to put an end to your pregnancy, you need to travel abroad, as Maltese women are currently doing. Choose a country that allows abortion. There are plenty in Europe, such as France, Spain, Italy, Belgium, the United Kingdom… Before you plan your abortion abroad, you need to get information about the cases when abortion is allowed, the conditions and the deadlines.

Having an abortion abroad will be at your own cost. However, the Abortion Support Network (ASN) can assist and support you if you need it.

Pregnancy follow-up in Malta

For your pregnancy follow-up in Malta, you need to choose between public and private hospitals. The latest option is, of course, more expensive. If you opt for a private hospital, make sure you subscribed to private health insurance, as the Maltese social security does not cover it.

Here is a list of the main hospitals and clinics in Malta having maternity and obstetrics services: Mater Dei Hospital (public), Gozo General Hospital (public), and Saint James Hospital (private). You can find them in the “Useful links” at the end of this article.

Some hospitals also offer infertility treatments such as In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF).

During your pregnancy in Malta, you will attend regular screenings and tests during the nine months. The first appointment takes place between 8 and 12 weeks of pregnancy, during the first trimester. You will know the estimated due date. In private hospitals and clinics, screening for trisomies, structural anomalies, growth issues later in the pregnancy and risk of high blood pressure also can be undertaken.

After the 12th week of pregnancy, at the beginning of the second trimester, you can do a Nuchal Translucency Scan. Urine tests and ultrasounds are carried out regularly by the gynecologist or obstetrician. Between the 19th and the 24th weeks, it is recommended to do an Anomaly (or Morphology) Scan.

You can choose to do 4D ultrasound scans around the 27th to the 29th week of pregnancy. It is strongly recommended to do a growth scan between the 32nd and the 36th weeks.

This follow-up, along with your practitioner's advice and guidance, will also help you in case of common pregnancy issues, such as morning sickness and chronic back pain. Your gynecologist or obstetrician will help you in case of problems like miscarriage, ectopic pregnancies and the loss of a baby.

Prenatal classes in Malta

During your pregnancy in Malta, you may also wish to attend prenatal classes. There are various antenatal and prenatal classes in Malta: birth preparation seminars, breastfeeding, Pilates, exercise sessions and more.

At Mater Dei Hospital, the Parentcraft Services Unit offers courses to expectant women/couples and also to new parents. The courses start as early as 10 weeks of pregnancy. Some courses are in English.

Giving birth in Malta

When you feel contractions or even have your waters breaking, it is time to go to the hospital you have chosen in Malta. Make sure you prepared your birthing plan beforehand, including the items to take with you at the hospital and the chosen pain relief.

The parents must register the newborn in Malta. They need to give notice to the Public Registry within 15 days of the birth. To do the registration you can:

Once the notification of birth is complete, you need to order a birth certificate online within 10 working days from

Useful links:

Government of Malta – Pregnancy and birth

Pharmacies in Malta

Mater Dei Hospital

Gozo General Hospital

Saint James Hospital

Getting an abortion

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.