UK abortion clinics routinely violate law, forge abortion documents: government investigation
LONDON, July 16, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – An ongoing investigation by a government regulator has revealed that numerous abortion facilities funded by the National Health Service routinely forge the forms required by law for abortions.
The Quality Care Commission (QCC) has been investigating the practices surrounding abortion in 249 health care facilities around Britain and has already censured 14 NHS hospitals who were found to be flouting the regulations. The QCC has also released their findings to police.
The regulator says it found that hospital staff routinely forged the required permission certificates, usually by having doctors pre-sign the forms in batches. According to UK law, a woman wanting to abort her child must receive the signatures of two doctors, and give a reason recognized under one of the official grounds for abortion. Under the Abortion Act 1967, forging the signatures of the doctors would render the abortions illegal.
At the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, Essex, staff were using a box of forms that had been pre-signed by a doctor who no longer works at the facility.
“This demonstrated evidence of a doctor either providing to others or knowingly allowing others, to use forms signed in advance by them or photocopied with their signature,” the QCC report said. “It also showed evidence of a doctor signing and/or dating a blank form in advance with a ground for abortion, without reaching an opinion in good faith.”
Inspectors found that at King’s College Hospital in south London, the practices could “give rise to a risk of unsafe or inappropriate care and treatment”. In the nine sets of medical records they examined, “both doctors’ certification of opinion predated the referral.” In other hospitals, doctors’ signatures were photocopied onto the forms.
In February this year, the Daily Telegraph published the results of an investigation in which undercover reporters went to several NHS-supported abortion facilities and found that the regulations were being routinely violated. A scandal erupted briefly in the press when it was revealed that “sex-selective” abortions, technically against the rules, were widely being practiced. Health Minister Andrew Lansley ordered the QCC to investigate and said that the practice of killing girl babies was “morally repugnant” Lansley also said that women should be offered “independent counselling” before undergoing abortions.
By March it was revealed that 1/5th of abortion facilities investigated were breaking the law.
Pro-life advocates, however, have said the revelations should not be a surprise to anyone familiar with the rhetoric of the abortion movement that holds any restrictions on the “right” to abortion to be unacceptable. Almost immediately after the revelations about sex-selective abortions, Marge Berer, a major figure in the abortionist movement, defended such abortions on the grounds of the total freedom of women to “choose”.
Pro-lifers have warned for years that abortion regulations had been put into the law in the first place as no more than a sop to vestigial public moral squeamishness on abortion, and were being widely ignored. This was known to government at least as far back as 2007 when Dr. Vincent Argent, the former medical director of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, gave evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology committee saying that abortion facilities routinely provided pre-signed consent forms.