Abortion counselling should remain optional, say experts

The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists have said that the move to implement mandatory abortion counselling for women should not be passed.

With a planned shake up of abortion legislation in the pipeline and talk of mandatory counselling being implemented for women who are considering abortions, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists have published new guidance on the matter.

The new guidance from the college recommends that women considering an abortion should be offered counselling – but it should not be forced upon them if they are very clear that they wish to go ahead with the procedure.

Additional recommendations also include doctors identifying women who are suffering from domestic abuse and then referring them on for further support from social services, and abortion providers being made more aware that women who have suffered previously from a mental health concern being more susceptible to further problems after a termination.

Family Planning Association (FPA) chief executive Julie Bentley has said that she believe these new guidelines are sensible and could go some way in improving women’s experiences of abortion services and care.

“We are pleased to see that they confirm the evidence that abortion is not a direct cause of poor mental health and that there isn’t a link between abortion and breast cancer.” She said.

For further information about counselling, please visit our Counselling and Psychotherapy page to find out more.

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Written by Emma Hilton

Written by Emma Hilton

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