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Abortion providers demand funding increase while NHS struggles

Two major British abortion providers are demanding more tax payer money for abortions in Britain despite the struggling NHS.

Both the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) and MSI Reproductive Choices have told i news that their organisations are not being paid enought for the abortions they perform on behalf of the NHS.

MSI Reproductive Choices and BPAS are two of the largest independent abortion providers in Britain. 165,400 out of 214,256 abortions performed on residents of England and Wales in 2021, took place in the independent sector funded by the NHS. 

NHS abortions are funded through the National Tariff system, a set of rules and prices that govern the payments made by Integrated Care Boards (ICBs), which commission abortion services, to providers for carrying out abortions.

Under the tariff, a medical abortion – when women take two pills to induce an abortion – between nine and fourteen weeks as an outpatient procedure costs around £500, once staff and other expenses are taken into account. A surgical abortion up to 14 weeks costs £1,078.

Katherine O’Brien, associate director of communications and campaigns at BPAS, said that abortion needs to be more widely available and wanted to see more funding for abortions provided to private providers. “

Similarly Dr Jonathan Lord, medical director of independent provider MSI Reproductive Choices said that abortion providers should be paid more for the abortions they perform. 

Right To Life UK spokesperson, Catherine Robinson, said: “Following Covid 19 pandemic, the pressure on the NHS as well as funding difficulties are now well established..”

“It is a scandal that abortion is legal in the first instance; it is a further scandal that the British taxpayer is having to pay for it; it is a further scandal that abortion providers are demanding that more money be diverted from genuine healthcare to fund abortion. Being pregnant is not a disease. Performing an abortion is not treatment.”

Dear reader,

You may be surprised to learn that our 24-week abortion time limit is out of line with the majority of European Union countries, where the most common time limit for abortion on demand or on broad social grounds is 12 weeks gestation.

The latest guidance from the British Association of Perinatal Medicine enables doctors to intervene to save premature babies from 22 weeks. The latest research indicates that a significant number of babies born at 22 weeks gestation can survive outside the womb, and this number increases with proactive perinatal care.

This leaves a real contradiction in British law. In one room of a hospital, doctors could be working to save a baby born alive at 23 weeks whilst, in another room of that same hospital, a doctor could perform an abortion that would end the life of a baby at the same age.

The majority of the British population support reducing the time limit. Polling has shown that 70% of British women favour a reduction in the time limit from 24 weeks to 20 weeks or below.

Please click the button below to sign the petition to the Prime Minister, asking him to do everything in his power to reduce the abortion time limit.