Health Authorities Contest New Abortion Bill in France

The Council for the French National Order of Doctors is contesting the removal of conscience clause in the pending abortion bill. In a press release on October 10, it explained: “because this would not guarantee access to abortion whithout obstacles, the Order opposes the deletion of the specific conscience clause.”

In addition, the French Medical Academy has challenged the bill for medical reasons: “There are no authentic requests from women which correspond to extending the legal abortion deadline to 16 weeks of amenorrhea. On the contrary, women are asking for quicker handling, whereas this modification could extend the deadline to handle their request, and this would inevitably end up in a substantial increase in complications in the short or long term.». The Academy also warns that, regardless of the term of the pregnancy, given that midwives, for the time being, have no surgical qualifications, they should not be allowed to perform surgical abortions.

In fact, these recent statements have been issued as a reply to a new draft law “to extend abortion rights” which was tabled and then examined barely a month later. The speedy process took everyone by surprise, especially since neither the representatives for health professionals nor civil society were consulted, thus preventing any public debate.

The IFOP survey regarding the French and abortion, published on October 7, showed that citizens are more concerned about helping women avoid abortion. The majority are in favor of a genuine abortion prevention policy, instead of continuing to facilitate abortion and to profess the idea that this act is trivial and devoid of consequences.

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