The Master of one of Ireland's busiest maternity hospitals has said the "floodgates didn't open" when abortion services were introduced a year ago. 

While official figures have not been released on how many women have accessed the services nationally, it is estimated that between 300 and 400 terminations have been carried out in the Rotunda hospital in Dublin over the past 12 months.

Master of the Rotunda Fergal Malone said GPs have done the most of the work with the majority of terminations taking place before nine weeks. 

He estimated that around five patients before 12 weeks gestation are seen every week for a termination in the Rotunda and approximately two patients a week with a fatal foetal abnormality. 

He said a termination for medical illness, where the mother's life is in danger is rarer, occuring once every week or two. 

Special evening clinics are held in the Rotunda every week and terminations generally take place at weekends when regular gynaecological services are quieter.

Only ten out of the 19 maternity units in the country offer full termination services while the others offer care, supervision and manage complications arising from abortions. 

Health Service Executive data shows that as of 13 December, 348 GPs had signed the contract to provide abortion services, which represents only 15% of GPs nationwide. 

Sinead Kennedy, who campaigned for the repeal of the Eighth Amendment, said this has resulted in some black spots throughout the country in terms of accessibility. 

She said: "This is the case particularly in the northwest, in Sligo for example, there are no doctors registered". 

However, Ms Kennedy welcomed the availability of information for women. 

12,000 calls to HSE helpline on unplanned pregnancies in first year

There were 12,080 calls between January and the end of November to the HSE freephone line for people seeking information about unplanned pregnancies.

Figures also show that the MyOptions website was accessed over 331,000 times between January and December 2019.

Data is being collated by the Department of Health on abortion services via a notification process. 

According to the legislation: "The minister shall, not later than 30 June each year, prepare a report on the notifications received by him or her during the immediately preceding year, and shall, as soon as may be after preparing the report, cause copies of the report to be laid before each House of the Oireachtas." 

The first report will be issued in 2020.

Additional Reporting Ailbhe Conneely