Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The life or health of the mother

If this response in the UK House of Lords is at all comparable to the American experience, then much of the "pro-choice" argument disappears. If we eliminated all abortions except those for the life or health of the mother [and even allowed those for rape and incest] it would make up a tiny percentage of those committed each year. The question and response:
Asked by Lord Alton of Liverpool: To ask Her Majesty's Government how many abortions have been performed under the provisions of the Abortion Act 1967 (as amended by Section 37 of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990) to the latest date available; and how many of those abortions were to save the life of the pregnant woman.[HL1563]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe): Between 1968 and 2011 (the latest year for which figures are available) there have been 6.4 million abortions performed on residents of England and Wales. Of these, 143 (0.006%) were performed under Section 1(4), ie where the termination is immediately necessary to save the life of the pregnant woman or to prevent grave permanent injury to the physical or mental health of the pregnant woman.

A further 23,778 (0.37%) abortions were performed under Section 1(1)(c), ie that the continuance of pregnancy would involve the risk to the life of the woman, greater than if the pregnancy were terminated.

Lords Hansard text for 19 Jul 201219 July 2012 (pt 0001)