Health ministers oppose change to abortion advice

MPs have been told that health ministers are against a proposed change to the advice given to women considering an abortion.

The amendment to the Health and Social Care Bill put forward by Conservative MP Nadine Dorries proposes that abortion providers such as Marie Stopes should not give out advice to pregnant women considering a termination.

Dorries argues that organisations that carry out abortions may have a vested financial interest in the procedure being carried out.

The Bill is set to be debated in the House of Commons, although it is not clear whether the amendment will also be debated.

The proposed changes have received the support of many Christians, including the Christian Medical Fellowship (CMF) and advocacy group Christian Concern.

CMF said in a posting on its website: “Many people assume that women considering abortion have access to independent information and advice. In fact there is no legal guarantee that they do.

“Where counselling is available, it is often given by the very same private providers that carry out abortions and gain financially from them!

“Vulnerable women frequently find themselves on a conveyor belt that leads inexorably towards abortion, with little or no opportunity or time to consider other options, or to be fully informed of any of the risks associated with abortion.”

The amendment has come up against stiff opposition from the pro-choice lobby and earlier this week, Downing Street revealed that Prime Minister David Cameron was also opposed to the amendment.

Pro-choice campaigners argue that faith-based groups should not provide abortion advice to women because they may try to push their religious views onto them.

According to the BBC, the letter sent by the Department of Health to MPs says that all health ministers are against the amendment.

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