Added by Annika L. Krugel on January 16, 2011
British women could be given the option of having a “DIY abortion” in coming months, should a controversial law change be approved.
The law change, proposed by the British Pregnancy Advisory service (BPAS), would allow women to administer the second part of a medical abortion in familiar surroundings rather than in a hospital or clinic.
At presents, women who are in their first nine months of pregnancy can choose a medical, instead of a surgical, abortion, in which they take two sets of tablets under the supervision of a doctor or a nurse.
The first table causes the lining of the womb to be unstable, and the second encourages the womb to contract and push out the foetus.
Anti-abortion charity Life has criticised the proposed law change by saying: “Clearly, BPAS’s intention is to increase access to abortion yet further, by making it little more than a pill-popping exercise,” whereas supporters call the current procedure “unnecessary” and “ludicrous”.
Around 75,700 early medical abortions are performed every year, making up one third of all terminations. While supporters of medical abortions believe the procedure is safe, there are some side-effects; women are twice as likely to require hospital treatment following this procedure compared to a surgical termination.