The president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Scotland has criticised the Scottish Government over its home abortion initiative.
In a strongly worded letter to Scotland’s Health Minister, Bishop Hugh Gilbert has described the Scottish Government’s decision to allow women experiencing crisis pregnancies to have consultations by phone or video and to make provision for the delivery of abortion medication by post as ‘deeply troubling’.
In the letter, Bishop Gilbert raises several serious concerns, highlighting fears that the April 2019 NICE Draft Guidelines, which refer to a risk of serious complications and a risk of severe bleeding, sepsis and in some cases a need for further surgery, are being ignored.
He also points out, that there is no way of establishing that a woman is not being coerced into an abortion in the context of a poorly safeguarded online consultation. Adding that, at a time when there is already an increase in complaints about domestic abuse, coercion is a very real concern.
The bishop’s letter also asks if women are ‘receiving information on all available options including details of organisations which can offer support to both the mother and the baby?’
Picture: The Bishop of Aberdeen, Hugh Gilbert. (Jane Barlow/PA).