The government has made huge changes to its abortion laws during the coronavirus lockdown

Here’s everything you need to know

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Here’s everything you need to know

Coronavirus has changed life as we know it. And with the UK now on lockdown, extreme measures are being taken.

Schools have closed, workers have been sent home and non emergency staff have been urged not to leave their houses where possible.

This has brought the issue of women’s reproductive rights to the forefront, with concern that women wouldn't be able to travel to abortion clinics during the lockdown.

It was reported today however that the UK had temporarily relaxed its laws on abortion during the outbreak in order to ensure that women maintain their reproductive rights.

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‘Public safety and continued access to key services is our priority during this difficult period,’ a statement read, announcing the news. 'We are updating our guidance so women who need an abortion up to ten weeks and can’t access a clinic can use abortion pills at home.’

The statement continued: ‘This measure will be on a temporary basis and must follow a telephone or e-consultation with a doctor. We will set out the next steps, including updated guidance, shortly.’

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The news has been welcomed across the internet but has prompted calls for immediate action.

‘We welcome the report that the government is preparing to reinstate telemedicine for early abortion care but we need clarity as this service must be made available to women as soon as possible,’ announced the British Pregnancy Service’s Dr Patricia Lohr. 'Many women with unwanted pregnancies are currently unable to leave their homes or are having to travel across the country to access care as services buckle, putting themselves and those they come into contact with at needless risk.’

We will continue to update this story.

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.