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UK taxpayer-funded abortions in private clinics reach record high, as clinics accused of paying staff bonuses for persuading women to abort
Revised abortion statistics released by the Department for Health show that abortion numbers hit a ten year high in 2017.
The revised statistics show that there were 197,533 abortions in 2017, 2,845 more than was originally reported earlier this year.
The Department of Health also reported that the number of abortions funded by the NHS performed by private abortion providers reached a record high of 134,768, a 270% increase in the last 20 years. This represents 70% of abortions, up from 68% in 2016.
The figures also show a large increase in abortions performed in the UK’s five largest abortion clinics, which are all now private abortion providers, from 33,064 in 2016 to 34,697. The UK’s largest abortion clinic, Marie Stopes International London South in Brixton performed 7841 abortions in 2017.
This increase in abortions comes as private abortion providers have been accused of persuading women to have abortions. A report from Care Quality Commission published last year accused Marie Stopes International of paying staff bonuses for encouraging women to undergo terminations.
At all 70 Marie Stopes clinics, inspectors also found evidence of a policy which saw staff utilise a high-pressure sales tactic, calling women who had decided against having an abortion to offer them another appointment. The report also stated that parents, partners or friends of pregnant women who might persuade them to think again about the termination were “seen as an inconvenience” and that “their presence was strongly discouraged”.
The abortion statistics for 2017 also show a rise in repeat abortions from 73,582 in 2016 up to 74,204 in 2017. In 2017, 38% of all abortions were repeat abortions. A further 111 twins or triplets were aborted, in a procedure called ‘selective termination’ – where one or more twins is aborted in the womb.
Spokesperson for Right To Life UK, Clare McCarthy said:
“Abortion figures have reached a ten year high in 2017. The figures also show that the number of abortions funded by the NHS being performed by private abortion clinics has increased to a record high of 134,768. This is a 270% increase in the last 20 years.
This increase in abortions comes as these private abortion clinics have been accused by the Care Quality Commission of paying staff bonuses for persuading women to undergo abortions. CQC inspectors have also found evidence of a policy which saw staff utilise a high-pressure sales tactics which appeared to be used to drive abortion numbers. This involved calling women who had decided against having an abortion to offer them another appointment. This policy was in place at all 70 Marie Stopes clinics across the UK.
Vulnerable women should not be seen as a revenue opportunity but sadly we know this is not the reality as abortion itself is a multi-million pound industry. Private abortion clinics have a vested monetary interest in increasing the numbers of abortions they perform every year.”
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- For further information on Right To Life UK visit www.righttolife.org.uk
- The full 2017 revised abortion statistics are available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/abortion-statistics-for-england-and-wales-2017
- Further information on the Care Quality Commission investigation of Maries Stopes International is available here: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/abortions-marie-stopes-clinic-bonuses-persuade-women-investigation-a8012171.html
- The abortion numbers for the five largest abortion clinics are for 2017 and 2016 are provided in the table below. The 2016 data was obtained from a Freedom of Information request and the tables are available on request from Right To Life UK. 2017 figures were obtained from here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/763141/2017-abortion-statistics-data-tables-revised.ods
|Abortion clinic/hospital||Number of abortions 2017||Number of abortions 2016|
|Marie Stopes International London South (Brixton)||7,841||8,644|
|Marie Stopes International London West (Ealing)||7,558||6,484|
|Marie Stopes International Essex||7,457||7,262|
|Marie Stopes Calthorpe (Edgbaston, Birmingham)||5,964||4,631|
|BPAS Rosslyn Clinic (Richmond, London)||5,877||6,043|