Abortions in Scotland at their highest since 2008

(Photo: Unsplash)

Abortion numbers rose to their second-highest ever on record last year, according to the latest statistics released by Public Health Scotland.

Official figures show that there were 13,583 terminations in 2019, up 297 from 2018. 

It is the highest abortion total for Scotland since 2008. 

The data shows a considerable jump in abortions at home, from 29.9% of terminations in 2018 to 49.3% last year. 

Repeat abortions are up from 3.5 per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 in 2010, to 4.4 per 1,000 last year.  In 2019, over a third of terminations (34%) were repeat abortions. 

There were 581 terminations among women over 40, the highest number in this age group since abortion became legal in 1967. 

Right to Life UK said the number of abortions at home is likely to increase after the Government eased regulations during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Catherine Robinson, spokesperson for the organisation, said: "Sadly, the number of abortions taking place in Scotland has reached the second highest number on record. Every one of these 13,583 abortions is a tragic loss of life."

She added: "We are calling on the Scottish Government to urgently bring forward sensible new restrictions and increased support for women with unplanned pregnancies.

"This would ensure we were working together as a society to reduce the tragic number of abortions that happen each year."