Women able to abort without two doctors’ consent

Women to be able to abort without two doctors' consent

Women will be able to have an abortion without the need for the signature of two doctors in an overhaul of abortion laws.

The shadow health secretary, Andrew Lansley, told MPs this week that he aimed to make it easier for women to have earlier abortions and lower the time limit for late terminations.

The government denoted it would not contest the move, indicating it will almost certainly be passed. The Commons will vote on the abortion laws next week, for the first time in almost two decades. Pro-life MPs will attempt to cut the limit from 24 weeks to 22 weeks or less.

This is just one of a number of controversial votes on next week’s Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill, which includes plans to permit the creation of hybrid and human embryos.

Mr Langley told MPs:’If a woman needs an abortion…then it must be better for that to be an early and medical abortion, rather than later and surgical.

‘Therefore, the House should consider whether the request for two doctors to provide approval, and the restriction on a nurse providing a medical abortion require to be maintained.’

Ann Furedi, of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, a charity which provides help with contraception and abortion, added: ‘We completely agree that it is ludicrously anachronistic that two doctors should have to certify that a woman meets the legal grounds for abortion.’

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