Abortion numbers highest ever for English and Welsh residents, latest statistics show

Jun 11, 2020 by

from Right to Life:

11 June 2020 – Abortion statistics released by the Department for Health this morning show the highest number of abortions ever recorded for English and Welsh residents, with 207,384 abortions for English and Welsh residents, an increase of 6,776.

The figures show that: 

  • In England and Wales, there was a total of 209,519 abortions in 2019, an increase of 3.4% abortions from 2018 when there were 205,295 abortions.
    • 207,384 of these abortions were for residents of England and Wales, an increase of 6,776.
  • The statistics for 2019 also show a rise in repeat abortions from 78,988 in 2018 up to 83,624 in 2019.
    • This represents 4,626 more repeat abortions than in 2018.
    • This is a 5.9% increase from 2018 when there were 78,988.
  • 126 ‘selective termination’ procedures were performed, where a twin, triplet or more were aborted in the womb.
  • There were 3,183 disability-selective abortions in 2019
    • This represents a 53% increase compared to 2009 when there were 2,085.
    • 656 babies with Down’s syndrome were aborted in 2019.
  • There were 17 abortions where the baby had cleft lip or cleft palate.
    • A cross-party group of MPs have come together to bring forward the Abortion (Cleft lip, cleft palate and club foot protection) Bill which received a First Reading on 3 June 2020.
    • The Bill would change the law to clarify that cleft palate, cleft lip, cleft palate and lip, and club foot are not grounds for abortion in the UK. This would mean that abortions could not occur when the primary diagnosed condition is cleft palate, cleft lip, cleft palate and lip, and club foot.
    • Sadly, the figures for cleft lip and palate are likely to be higher, for example a 2013 review by Eurocat showed 157 babies were aborted with cleft lip and palate in England and Wales between 2006 and 2010. However, the Department of Health & Social Care (DoHSC) recorded only 14 such abortions.
  • 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 153,601. This represents 74% of abortions, up from 72% in 2018. It also represents a 255% increase since 1999 when there 43,266 performed by private providers.

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