Europe – Even where abortion is legal, access is not granted

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Even where abortion is legal, access is not granted
In several European countries tough abortion laws are not necessary, as the lack of available gynecologists makes it almost impossible for women to access abortion.

Thursday 24 May 2018
Paola Tamma

Ireland will hold a referendum on 25 May, asking voters whether they want or not to repeal the so-called Eight amendment to the Irish Constitution, guaranteeing the equal right to life of the unborn and the mother, and prohibiting abortion in almost all cases, making it one of the world’s toughest abortion laws in the world.

But tough law is not always needed to actually restrict access to abortion: in some countries where abortion is legal, women face increasing problems to access it because non-objecting gynecologists are simply not available.

continued: https://www.europeandatajournalism.eu/eng/News/Data-news/Even-where-abortion-is-legal-access-is-not-granted

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Italy’s far right uses Irish vote to boost anti-abortion campaign

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Italy's far right uses Irish vote to boost anti-abortion campaign
ProVita activists boost campaign in run-up to 40th anniversary of legalisation of abortion

Angela Giuffrida in Rome
Sat 19 May 2018

Activists and far-right politicians have seized on Italy’s low birth rate and the attention on Ireland’s referendum on abortion to boost their own campaign to outlaw the practice.

As the 40th anniversary of Italy’s legalisation of abortion approaches, the renewed effort also comes as the far-right League, which contains many anti-abortion militants, stands on the brink of forming a government with the anti-establishment Five Star Movement following inconclusive general elections in March.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/19/italys-far-right-use-irish-abortion-referendum-to-boost-pro-life-campaign

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Thousands of Croatians march against abortion

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Thousands of Croatians march against abortion

AFP
May 19, 2018

Zagreb (AFP) - Thousands of anti-abortion demonstrators took to the streets in Croatia's three biggest cities on Saturday in rallies that largely passed without incident, even as the issue continues to divide the staunchly Catholic EU member state.

Police estimated that around 10,000 people took part in a "March for Life" in Zagreb, carrying banners that read "I'm not a choice, but a child", while thousands more demonstrated in both Split and Rijeka on the Adriatic coast.

Continued: https://www.yahoo.com/news/thousands-croatians-march-against-abortion-145800979.html

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Ireland – Abortion: INMO calls for conscientious objection safeguards

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Abortion: INMO calls for conscientious objection safeguards
Nurses union has had no discussions to date with HSE about the implications of repeal

May 2, 2018
Barry Roche

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation expects the same conscientious objection protections that exist for nurses under the Protection of Life in Pregnancy Act to be afforded to nurses and midwives in any forthcoming legislation in the event of the Eighth Amendment being repealed.

INMO director of social policy and regulation Edward Matthews said that nurses and midwives are afforded the same protections as medical practitioners when it comes to conscientious objection to carrying out a termination of pregnancy.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/abortion-inmo-calls-for-conscientious-objection-safeguards-1.3481966

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USA – How The Administration’s Proposed ‘Conscience’ Rule Undermines Reproductive Health and Patient Care

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How The Administration’s Proposed ‘Conscience’ Rule Undermines Reproductive Health and Patient Care

Adam Sonfield,Guttmacher Institute
First published on Health Affairs Blog: March 21, 2018

On January 19, the Trump administration proposed new regulations to interpret and enforce more than 20 federal statutory provisions related to “conscience and religious freedom.” Collectively, as interpreted by the administration, these statutes would grant broad powers to individuals and organizations in the health care field and beyond to refuse to provide or be involved with services, information, and referrals to which they have religious or moral objections. That includes services related to abortion, contraception, end-of-life care, global health care assistance, vaccination, and much more. The proposed regulations and steps to enforce them have real potential to undermine existing legal and ethical protections for patients’ access to sexual and reproductive health information and services, and other critical care.

Continued: https://www.guttmacher.org/article/2018/03/how-administrations-proposed-conscience-rule-undermines-reproductive-health-and

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UK – Bill to give medical staff right to refuse role in abortions condemned

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Bill to give medical staff right to refuse role in abortions condemned
Bill would expand rights of conscientious objection for healthcare professionals

Tim Wyatt
Wed 21 Mar 2018

Pro-choice groups have condemned an attempt to create new laws that would allow doctors and nurses to refuse to take part in abortions on moral grounds.

A private bill going through the House of Lords that would expand rights of conscientious objection for healthcare professionals has been dismissed as unnecessary by abortion providers and campaigners.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/mar/21/bill-to-give-medical-staff-right-to-refuse-role-in-abortions-condemned

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UK: Home abortions ‘could see more objections from GPs and pharmacists’

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Home abortions 'could see more objections from GPs and pharmacists'

Feb 8, 2018

A midwife who campaigned for staff to opt out of abortion work fears plans for "at home" abortions could see a rise in objections from health staff.

Mary Doogan lost her fight to not be responsible for other colleagues involved in terminations. She thinks the plans to allow women to take the second abortion pill at home will implicate GPs and pharmacists.

Continued: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-42989711

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Ireland: Medical professionals will be able to object to providing terminations

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Medical professionals will be able to object to providing terminations
GPs, obstetricians and gynaecologists will be allowed to conscientiously object

Feb 7, 2018
Sarah Bardon

Medical professionals will be able to object to the administration of terminations under Government proposals.

Minister for Health Simon Harris has confirmed he will allow for GPs, obstetricians and gynaecologists to conscientiously object to providing terminations in medical settings. The Government is seeking to introduce legislation to allow for abortions up to 12 weeks and believes this should be a service led by GPs.

However those representing GPs are critical of the lack of engagement by Mr Harris on the proposed legislation.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/medical-professionals-will-be-able-to-object-to-providing-terminations-1.3382792

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South Africa: Abortion – the legal service performed mostly illegally

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Abortion – the legal service performed mostly illegally

HEALTH-E NEWS South Africa
29 Jan 2018

Healthworkers who refuse to help women who want abortions are driving them into the arms of illegal abortionists who perform more than half of the country’s procedures. But activists believe it is time to stop stigmatising this service. GILL GIFFORD reports for HEALTH-E NEWS.

“I did not used to agree with abortion, but I changed my view. It took the death of a close friend and colleague who had procured an abortion. I promised I would meet her in theatre. She collapsed 30 minutes before. Her womb was rotten. I operated on her and found massive infection. Her insides were full of pus. She was in ICU, and I prayed for her. She died after 10 days and her mother had to take in her four-year old son.”

Continued: https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2018-01-29-health-e-news-abortion-the-legal-service-performed-mostly-illegally/

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USA: Health Workers Who Oppose Abortion Get New Protections

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Health Workers Who Oppose Abortion Get New Protections
By ROBERT PEAR
JAN. 18, 2018

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration announced on Thursday that it was taking new steps to protect doctors, nurses and other health workers who have religious or moral objections to performing abortions or sex-change operations, or providing other medical services.

The move, one day before the annual March for Life in Washington, was a priority for anti-abortion groups.

Administration officials urged people to report discrimination to a new unit of the federal government: the conscience and religious freedom division of the office for civil rights at the Department of Health and Human Services.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/18/us/health-care-office-abortion-contraception.html

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