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Defending life
from conception to natural death


“Ratings? They should be shut down”: SPUC responds ratings for abortion clinics

14 September 2017


The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) has responded to news from the Department of Health that abortion providers are now going to be subject to ratings by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). The move follows a string of scandals that have rocked the abortion industry.

An investigation by the Daily Telegraph in 2012 found doctors agreeing to arrange sex-selective abortions, which are illegal.

And inspections of Marie Stopes clinics by the CQC recently found 373 botched abortions carried out in two months, and 11 women being transferred to emergency care in another two month period. A previous report, published in December, found major safety flaws at the organisation's clinics, with more than 2,600 serious incidents reported in 2015, forcing MSI to suspend services for underage girls and vulnerable women. Failures included doctors going home while women remained sedated and foetuses thrown into bins instead of being cremated.

Last month, SPUC, with care organisation Life, presented a petition signed by thousands of people calling on the Health Secretary to deprive Marie Stopes of its licence.

John Smeaton, CEO of SPUC said: "This news is adding insult to injury. The appalling suffering which these clinics have imposed on women has been made abundantly clear through the recent CQC investigations, as has their complete disregard for the law of the land, not to speak of human life.

"Marie Stopes was found to have been guilty of thousands of safety breaches in December, and, several months on, inspectors found little improvement in key areas – they are still routinely hospitalising women and have failed to implement basic safety procedures. The time for ratings is long past – they need to be shut down, now."

However, SPUC welcomed the increased scrutiny under which the move will put the abortion industry.

"There is no ‘good’ way to do an abortion, and the idea of some clinics getting a ‘good’ or even ‘outstanding’ rating is utterly repellent. Having said that, some clinics’ practices are even worse than others, and, at least the Government is giving some recognition to the concerns being raised,” Mr Smeaton said. “At a time when the abortion industry is campaigning hard to have any legal restrictions on abortion removed, putting clinics under more searching scrutiny is in principle something to be welcomed. If all these failings have come to light with the minimal checks in place now, we can expect to see far more coming to light if clinics are more seriously investigated."

Notes to editors:

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