Make home abortion permanently legal, doctors leader urges

Katie Gibbons, The Times Friday February 19 2021

Doctors are calling for home medical abortions to be made permanently legal as figures show that allowing women to take pills in private without visiting a clinic cuts waiting times.

Temporary legislation was introduced at the beginning of the pandemic to allow women easier access to medical termination in their homes via phone and video consultations.


UK – The majority of people want to make at-home abortions legal

It's an issue currently being debated by the government

FEB 19, 2021

A ground-breaking new study of over 50,000 medical abortions has found that the at-home option (introduced temporarily during the pandemic, for those up to 10 weeks pregnant) was not only safe and effective, but allowed more people to easily access the healthcare they required. The results of the study have been released during an especially poignant time, as the government is currently examining whether or not to make at-home abortions a permanent option in England.

The study looked at abortions carried out in England, Scotland and Wales, both before and after the pandemic, and researchers, from the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), MSI Reproductive Choices UK and the University of Texas at Austin, say their aim was to compare the data and see how the telemedicine service compares to the services previously available.


Edinburgh City Council U-turn on blocked abortion advice website searches

Edinburgh City Council has announced it will no longer block access to vital abortion information websites, after facing heavy criticism from a leading charity.

By Joseph Anderson
Wednesday, 17th February 2021

The council was previously accused of ‘taking
an anti-abortion stance’ by pro-choice campaigners after a freedom of
information act, submitted by the Local Democracy Reporting Service, revealed
the council does not allow employees or school pupils to access lifesaving
healthcare information on abortion.

Previously, the only accessible website containing abortion information was the
NHS website, however, charities such as the British Pregnancy Advisory
Service(BPAS) – which campaigns for women’s reproductive choices, provides a
helpline and appointments, and signposts women to treatment – were blocked .


Edinburgh woman says protests at abortion clinic made her feel ‘targeted’

Alice Murray chose to have an abortion after finding out she was pregnant at university, but said protestors at the clinic made her anxious

By Alasdair Clark, Journalist
15 Feb 2021

A new campaign has launched calling on the government to introduce "buffer zones" near abortion clinics to protect women from "intimidation and harassment".

Back Off Scotland, a campaign group aiming to pressure the Scottish Government into legislating for 150 metre protest-free zones around clinics providing abortions, have launched a petition calling for legislation.


Scotland – Abortion rules revolutionised by Covid-19 must stay

Jillian Merchant
Monday December 21 2020

At the start of the pandemic the Scottish government, at the urging of medical practitioners and activists, issued guidance allowing early medical abortion at home to prevent unnecessary risk to women and clinicians.

This enabled women in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy to attend medical appointments by telephone or video call before, where clinically appropriate, being sent the two abortion pills to take at home. This is now subject to a public consultation on making the change permanent.


Edinburgh students launch campaign to ban protesters outside abortion clinics

Edinburgh University students have launched a new campaign to ban protesters gathering outside city abortion clinics.

By Jolene Campbell
Monday, 16th November 2020

The campaign ‘Back Off Chalmers’ is calling for buffer zones to be set up to stop pro-life groups targeting women who going for treatment at the Chalmers Sexual Health Centre.

After services start up again after lockdown, campaigners say visitors to the Centre have been targeted by groups who pray outside the clinics, give out leaflets and approach women entering the clinic. Students who have set up the new anti-harassment campaign say the protests intimidates women.


Religious zealots only show why abortion should be legal

By Suzanne McLaughlin
22nd August

LAST week a 10-year-old Brazilian girl wearing a little flowery dress and cheap
flip-flops was bundled into a car boot clutching her fluffy toy frog. She was
driven through a back door to a hospital guarded by military police past a
throng of right-wing and religious extremists in order to have a termination.

Abortion is allowed in Brazil in just three instances: to save a woman’s life,
if it is the result of rape and if the child is dead. This little girl was
living through two of these circumstances. She was a victim of rape and her
life was in imminent danger and so the judge in her home area ruled that the
abortion should go ahead.


Decriminalising abortion is a long road. Campaigners Vicky Spratt and Diane Munday would know.

Decriminalising abortion is a long road. Campaigners Vicky Spratt and Diane Munday would know.

By Rachel Thompson
Jun 18, 2020

Vicky Spratt and Diane Munday are campaigning to decriminalise abortion in England, Scotland, and Wales.

Diane Munday campaigned to legalise abortion in Britain in the 1960s. Her activism has not only changed women’s lives in this country — but saved them. Along with journalist Vicky Spratt, Munday is fighting for the decrimalisation of abortion in England and Wales. Spratt has also changed the law. Her #MakeRentingFair campaign resulted in the government banning letting agency fees for tenants.


Scotland – Dundee charity boss concerned for women who experience abortion or miscarriage during ‘isolating’ lockdown

Dundee charity boss concerned for women who experience abortion or miscarriage during ‘isolating’ lockdown

by Frances Rougvie
April 25, 2020

The boss of a Dundee charity has said she is “concerned” for the emotional wellbeing of women who have experienced a miscarriage or abortion during the coronavirus lockdown.

Rachel MacDonald, centre manager of Alternatives Dundee, has urged those in need to reach out during this “very isolating time”.

As a result of Covid-19, women across Scotland can now have early medical abortions at home, to help reduce the number of people attending clinics and avoid exposing them to the virus.


UK – Access to remote abortion services should not be temporary

Access to remote abortion services should not be temporary

April 2, 2020
BMJ Blogs

Remote abortion care should always be offered to ensure the health of women, irrespective of whether there is a pandemic, argue Elizabeth Chloe Romanis and Jordan Parsons

On 30 March 2020, the Department of Health and Social Care liberalised abortion regulations, allowing women in England to be consulted about abortion care remotely and to take both abortion medications, mifepristone and misoprostol, at home. This same change had already been made the previous week, but was then revoked within a couple of hours. The Scottish and Welsh governments both followed suit on 31 March 2020 and have also authorised the remote prescription of abortion pills and for both pills to be taken at home. Before these interventions, women were required to attend clinics in order to access treatment that could have safely been provided remotely—a stance that was paradoxical during the pandemic.