bpas echoes calls from medical colleges for a woman-centred abortion framework in Northern Ireland

In response to today’s statement from the Royal College of Midwives, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, and the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare, Clare Murphy, Director of External Affairs at bpas, said:

“These Royal Colleges represent some of the most experienced healthcare professionals and medical experts in the field. There is nothing controversial about their message today that Northern Ireland’s new regulatory framework for abortion care should be rooted in clinical best practice. Put simply, doctors and midwives in Northern Ireland must be supported to do what’s best for their patients.

“This includes doing away with proposals for arbitrary gestational thresholds, which would do nothing to serve women’s needs and everything to undermine the healthcare professionals who care for them. There is no clinical, legal or moral reason to make it harder for women to get an abortion after 12 or 14 weeks. To impose such restrictions would mean a series of additional barriers and hoops for women, particularly those in more challenging circumstances and younger women who are disproportionately more likely to present later.

“Today’s statement from the RCM, RCOG and FSRH reinforces bpas’s submission to the government’s consultation – published today for the first time – which calls for a regulatory framework fit for the 21st century. Northern Irish policymakers have an opportunity now not just to replicate the outdated legal framework in Great Britain, but to create a brand new model that is truly woman-centred.”

ENDS

Read bpas’s submission to the consultation here.

For more information, please call 07788 725 185 or email press@bpas.org.

About bpas

bpas is a charity which sees nearly 100,000 women a year for reproductive healthcare services including pregnancy counselling, abortion care, miscarriage management and contraception, at clinics across the UK. It supports and advocates for reproductive choice. BPAS also runs the Centre for Reproductive Research and Communication, which seeks to develop and deliver a research agenda that furthers women’s access to evidence-based reproductive healthcare, driven by an understanding of women’s perspectives and needs. You can find out more here: https://www.bpas.org/get-involved/centre-for-reproductive-research-communication/