In the maelstrom of spring 2020, as the terrible dawning of the pandemic became apparent, a number of difficult decisions were understandably taken to protect our health services from being overwhelmed.
One of these was to strongly encourage video or telephone medical appointments with doctors over face-to-face consultations. The government announced this principle would apply to women seeking early abortions and temporary measures were approved which allowed women to carry out their own abortions at home, using pills sent by post or collected from a clinic following a remote consultation.
This enabled women, for the first time to terminate an unwanted pregnancy via abortion without being seen in person beforehand. This amounted to the biggest change to abortion law in this country since 1967 – a change that was ushered in with minimal scrutiny and no public consultation due to the circumstances of the pandemic.