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20th Apr 2023

Donnelly says abortion services should be available in all maternity hospitals

Kat O'Connor

Donnelly slated the lack of abortion services in Ireland.

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has slated the lack of abortion services in Ireland’s maternity hospitals.

Donnelly said abortion should be available in every maternity hospital in Ireland, but it is only available in 11 out of 19.

He said it is “totally and utterly unacceptable”.

Donnelly spoke out about the lack of services in the Dáil this morning.

He said he hopes more maternity hospitals will introduce abortion services in due course. He stressed that he hopes they take action swiftly.

Donnelly said one of his main goals is to improve Ireland’s abortion services. He said the HSE is also focused on this move.

He has vowed to improve abortion services in Ireland.

The Health Minister said their plan is to have 17 of 19 maternity hospitals offering abortion services by 2024.

“That only 11 of our 19 maternity hospitals are currently providing services is totally and utterly unacceptable.

“Therefore, I am working very closely with the HSE right now to increase the number from 11 to 17 this year. The plan for early next year is to increase it from 17 to 19.”

According to the HSE, you can have an abortion up to 12 weeks of pregnancy.

However, you can have an abortion earlier than that.

Doctors must certify that you are no more than 12 weeks pregnant before having an abortion.

You then must wait for three days until having the procedure.

This is the current law, but there have been calls to scrap the three-day wait period.

The reason for the three-day wait period is to give patients time to decide if they actually want to have an abortion.

You can call My Options, the free unplanned pregnancy support service, on freephone 1800 828 010 (My Options).