An official compilation of late-term abortion statistics has been questioned by the British journal of obstetrics and gynaecology.
The journal highlighted differences over data on late-term abortions published by the Department of Health. It noted a ‘substantial’ difference between the numbers of late abortions recorded by official Department of Health and those discovered during an EPICure study.
Mary Lubrano, communications co-ordinator of Life, said the figures should worry health authorities. She said, ‘If the discrepancy is real, something has gone very wrong with the collection of late abortion figures.
‘As the authors of the study point out, late-term abortions can be extremely traumatic for all involved, and a small but not insignificant number of late abortions result in the delivery of a live baby who is then left to die’.
Life said there was a clear public interest in having full and accurate figures available. Ms Lubrano said, ‘The ethical issues around late abortion — as well as around feticide and the handling of live births — are a legitimate matter for public debate, and a well-informed public debate is impossible without complete information’.
She said the authors’ recommendation that we avoid late abortions by screening earlier in pregnancy, and so enable couples to avoid late abortion by having a termination earlier in pregnancy, rather seems to miss the point.
She added: ‘It is ethically questionable to allow eugenic abortion in the first place, especially when many such abortions take place because of relatively minor “defects” or disabilities’.