Abortion services has become legal in Ireland for the first time after President Higgins signed the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) B
Abortion services has become legal in Ireland for the first time after President Higgins signed the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Bill into law.
The legislation was approved by the Seanad last week after being ratified in the Dail earlier this month, having been the subject of contentious debate in the Oireachtas over several weeks.
The government moved to legalise the termination of pregnancy in all cases up to 12 weeks gestation following May’s referendum on the Eighth Amendment, in which 66.4pc of voters chose to strike the constitutional ban on abortion.
Women who have been given a diagnosis of fatal foetal abnormalities will now be able to terminate their pregnancy in the hospital they are being treated in.
‘Having considered the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Bill 2018, the President has signed the Bill and it has accordingly become law,’ the President of Ireland account tweeted.
‘We welcome Ireland’s new abortion law as both a historical milestone for this country and an inspiration for millions of people globally,’ Amnesty Ireland’s Sorcha Tunney said.
‘Ireland’s abortion law was one of the most restrictive in the world, and today that is finally ending.’
The Medical Council announced today that it has updated its Ethical Guide to remove any conflict with the law ahead of its implementation.
It has also edited a paragraph to read: ‘[Doctors] have a duty to provide care, support and follow up for women who have had a termination of pregnancy.’
‘We have deleted the guidance in paragraphs 48.1 to 48.4 which relates to the Protection of life During Pregnancy Act 2013 and the provision of information relating to termination of pregnancy,’ Medical Council Ethics Working Group chairperson Dr Suzanne Crow said.
‘Doctors still have a duty to provide care, support and follow up for a person who has had a termination of pregnancy, as outlined in paragraph 48.5.’