Irish health minister proposes abortion free-of-charge

Catholic News Agency | 9/24/2018 | Staff
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Dublin, Ireland, Sep 24, 2018 / 03:03 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Irish Health Minister Simon Harris has announced that he intends to make it possible for women in the Republic of Ireland to have abortions free of charge, following the recent legalization of abortion in the country.

Harris said he didn’t want “cost to be a barrier” to women wanting to obtain abortions, and that it would become part of Ireland’s public health system. Funds to pay for the procedures will be included in this year’s budget, according to local media reports.

Harris - Speech - January - Women - Countries

Harris stated in a speech in January that an estimated 170,000 Irish women have traveled to other countries for abortions since 1980.

Irish president Michael Higgins signed the repeal of the Eighth Amendment, which was voted on in a country-wide referendum in May, into law Sept. 18. The law had previously provided for equal protection of the lives of both the mother and the unborn child.

Terms - Irish - Law - Phase - Health

In terms of Irish law, the next phase will involve the Health Minister submitting a new law governing abortion, which is expected to reach the Irish legislature in October and could be in force by 2019, according to NPR. Draft legislation suggests that the new law could allow elective abortion up to 12 weeks into a pregnancy.

Prominent Irish doctors have expressed concerns about the government’s quick turnaround to begin performing free abortions, citing safety concerns for the women involved.

Dr - Peter - Boylan - Chair - Institute

Dr Peter Boylan, chair of the Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, and Dr...
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