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Marie Stopes resumes abortions- before official report into failings is published

10 October 2016

A CQC report raised serious concerns about management, training and gaining consent at Marie Stopes. Photo: The Science Library

Marie Stopes International (MSI) has resumed performing abortions seven weeks after they were suspended over "serious concerns" about patient safety.

The abortion giant was forced to suspend terminations for vulnerable women and those under the age of 18, as well as all surgical abortions at its Norwich centre, after the Care Quality Commission (CQC) found problems with management, training and gaining consent.  MSI had to divert around 250 procedures a week to other abortion providers.

The deputy chief inspector of the CQC said on Friday that MSI's leadership had "accepted the severity of these concerns and taken appropriate action to address them". However, concerns have been raised about the decision to allow MSI to resume all services before an official report into the failings had been published.

Paul Tully, SPUC's general secretary, said "These serious concerns about MSI have clearly not been allowed to make a significant difference to the government funded abortion programme. It seems likely that more examples of malpractice will come to light when the official report is published."

The Pill "may increase risk of depression"

Women taking the pill may be at an increased risk of depression, with teenagers facing an 80% higher risk, a major study has found.

A Danish study covering over one million women found that those on the combined oral contraceptive pill, were 23% more likely to be prescribed an anti-depressant than non-users. The risk rose to 80 per cent among teenagers aged 15-19.

Media reaction to the study has been muted, with a Spectator columnist asking "Why isn't this more of a scandal?"

Irish journalist: Making a film about abortion in the US opened my eyes

Ann McElhinney writes in the Irish Times about how listening to why people chose abortion and what the procedure involved shocked her.

The Irish journalist acquired a swift education on abortion while working on a book and film about Kermit Gosnell, the Philadelphia abortionist convicted of murder.

She was shocked to hear some of the reasons cited by people seeking abortions in the US- including because twins would be inconvenient, or because another child would spoil their “ideal family”. Ms McElhinney also describes what she learnt of the abortion procedure itself.

She worries that none of these facts are being taken into account in the current debate on abortion in Ireland: "There will also be bans on nurses letting people listen to heartbeats or seeing ultrasounds and people whose work days consist of putting together the arms and legs of some women's choices. Ireland should vote knowing all that happens in a country where abortion is legal."

Desmond Tutu renews call for euthanasia laws

Desmond Tutu, the archbishop emeritus of Cape Town, has written on his support for assisted dying, in Britain, "South Africa, throughout the United States and across the globe."

The Anglican Archbishop first announced the reversal of his previous opposition to assisted dying in an opinion piece in the Guardian two years ago. Now he says that as his own death draws closer, he feels more strongly that "dying people should have a right to choose how and when they leave Mother Earth".

Archbishop Tutu also expressed his "blessing and support" for Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, who argued in favour of Lord Falconer's assisted dying bill. However, the bill was opposed by the Anglican establishment, with the current Archbishop, Justin Welby, calling it "mistaken and dangerous" and Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali saying that Lord Carey's support of the bill couldn't go unchallenged.

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