NI abortion: Guidelines issued ahead of 21 October deadline
8 October 2019
The government has published guidance for healthcare professionals on abortion law in Northern Ireland.
The new guidelines cover the period from 22 October to 31 March 2020.
They set out what will happen following changes to the law after 21 October, if the NI Executive is not restored.
‘The doctors in Northern Ireland knew my baby would die. But I was refused an abortion’
One grieving woman tells of the suffering the current ban caused her
Sun 6 Oct 2019
Denise Phelan was denied an abortion three years ago in circumstances so extreme she still finds it harrowing to speak about it, and does so only because she is determined that no other woman should be forced to go through a similar experience.
“My anger wakes me up at night. It’s a deep, almost in-the-bone anger,” she says. She and her husband, Richard Gosnold, are also still grieving for the loss of their baby, Alenja. Their trauma has been prolonged and they feel it is too late now to try for another pregnancy.
This week has proved that the fight for abortion rights is far from over
Kerry Abel, Chair of the Abortion Rights campaign
Sunday 6 Oct 2019
As the Chair of Abortion Rights, I am often asked why my organisation is still needed in 2019.
This week has been proof of why.
We’ve seen the High Court ruling that Northern Ireland’s archaic abortion laws breach the UK’s human right commitments, while also witnessing the disgusting harassment of Stella Creasy in her constituency, with anti-choice bullies putting up billboards with vile, misleading images they claim to be of foetuses.
Northern Ireland abortion law ruled to breach human rights
High court in Belfast rules against Northern Ireland’s strict abortion law
Rory Carroll, Ireland correspondent
Thu 3 Oct 2019
Northern Ireland’s near-blanket abortion ban breaches the UK’s human rights commitments, the high court in Belfast has ruled.
The decision, on Thursday, was made following a case brought by Sarah Ewart, 29, who was denied a termination in 2013 despite a scan showing the foetus she was carrying would not survive.
Why Ireland’s battle over abortion is far from over
From sham websites to rogue crisis pregnancy centres, Irish anti-abortionists are using shocking tactics to block women’s rights to safe abortions
Thu 3 Oct 2019
It has been more than a year since the landslide vote for abortion rights in Ireland, yet last weekend hundreds of people were once more marching through the streets of Dublin, chanting: “Get your rosaries off our ovaries!” “It’s nonsense, what are they marching for?” a guard standing on the road outside the National maternity hospital asked a colleague on a motorbike – referring to the 2018 referendum in which the Irish public voted overwhelmingly to repeal the law prohibiting abortion. The answer is that, while the law may have changed, many people are still struggling to access abortions in Ireland due to a lack of provision, the time restrictions on terminations, the illegal activities of anti-abortion campaigners – and an enduring legacy of shame.
Northern Ireland abortion restrictions breach UK’s human rights law, Belfast High Court rules
‘I’m feeling super relieved and happy,’ says Sarah Ewart, who was forced to travel to England to terminate her pregnancy
Maya Oppenheim, Women's Correspondent
Oct 3, 2019
Northern Ireland’s strict abortion law which bans the procedure even in cases of rape or incest infringes Britain’s human rights obligations, the High Court in Belfast has ruled.
The case was brought by Sarah Ewart, who was forced to travel to England for an abortion after being told there was no way her unborn child would survive.
My second and third daughters exist because abortion was legal and safe
I would not have risked another child with severe fetal defects, as my beloved first daughter had.
By Jana von Stein
May 28, 2019
Many parents-to-be learn at their 20-week ultrasound whether it’s a boy or a girl. We learned that our baby had severe cardiac defects. As my pregnancy progressed, it became more evident that her disorder affected more than just her heart. It would require multiple operations and might be life-defining. In the 23 months she lived, my daughter Sophie endured seven surgeries, became addicted to morphine and Ativan, and suffered more than most people do in decades’-longer lifetimes. Her dad and I tried, along with heroic nurses and doctors in Michigan, Boston and Stanford, to save her life. We failed. We worked tirelessly to give her a good quality of life, but — particularly in the last few months — it was not one worth living.
The doctors weren’t sure whether Sophie’s defects were a result of random bad luck or something hereditary. Her DNA looked normal, but it was clear there was a programming error at some point early in the gestation.
I Wish I’d Had A ‘Late-Term Abortion’ Instead Of Having My Daughter
By Dina Zirlott, Guest Writer
Warning: Details in this story could be triggering to some readers.
I was raped when I was 17 years old. I had a baby when I was 18 years old. My baby died when I was 19 years old.
I cannot recall the color of the sky when I woke up the morning I was raped, or what I did in the hours leading up to the assault. I think of it in terms of Before and After, and I’m caught right in between the two.
Abortion in Ireland: Four weeks in, how’s it working?
Abortion has been legal in Ireland for almost a month, yet uncertainties and problems persist
Jan 26, 2019
Next week will mark one month since the introduction of general abortion services for the first time in the history of the Irish State. In the final weeks of 2018, there were dire warnings from senior medics and family doctors that the January 1st deadline was being “rushed” and was “dangerously unrealistic”.
Only nine maternity hospitals were ready to provide full access to abortion care, with the remaining 10 expected to come on board shortly. Some 240 general practitioners have now signed up to the service. Despite the less than comprehensive level of access, abortions are now happening across the country in hospitals and in general practices.
Foetal anomaly cases require ‘teams of doctors’
Guidelines indicate foetal medicine specialist should be involved once a diagnosis is made
Tue, Jan 22, 2019
Decisions on whether or not to provide terminations in cases of foetal anomaly should be reached by multidisciplinary teams of doctors on a consensus basis, newly prepared guidelines indicate.
The multidisciplinary team (MDT) should be a formally-constituted committee of the hospital whose decisions are documented in clinical notes, according to the guidelines from the Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.