England Faces Pressure To Let Women Abort At Home After Wales Ruled In The Affirmative

Grace Carr | Reporter

England is facing pressure from doctors and medical societies to amend its law so that women can take the abortion pill at home.

The heads of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists along with the British Society of Abortion Care Providers and other groups have called on Health Secretary Matt Hancock to appeal to England’s Prime Minster Theresa May to change the law. Current law requires that women take two abortion pills 24 hours apart at an abortion clinic or hospital.

“There can be no justification not to act unless the aim is to punish women having a legal abortion,” Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists President Lesley Regan and her colleagues wrote in a Monday editorial. “Furthermore, it selectively disadvantages the most vulnerable – those who are deprived, live in rural areas or have dependants,” the leading British doctors continue.

“I can’t imagine what it would have been like if we had been stuck in traffic for just two minutes longer. And I was lucky that I could afford a taxi – many women cannot and have to travel home on public transport,” 23-year-old Claudia Craig told the Independent, explaining that she had collapsed and started to miscarry soon after she got home from an abortion clinic. “It doesn’t have to be this way. These journeys are a completely unnecessary ordeal.”

Wales ruled to allow women to take the abortion pill at home rather than in the presence of a medical professional on June 29. Previously, women had to visit a clinic twice to ingest two abortion-inducing pills within 72 hours of one another. There were 8,578 abortions in Wales in 2017. (RELATED: Women In Wales Can Now Take Abortion Pills At Home)

Scotland also ruled in 2017 that women could medicinally induce abortions in the privacy of their own homes. Following that decision, Scotland saw its highest rate of abortion since 2012. The Scots aborted over 12,000 unborn babies in 2017.

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