Women desperate for a girl should be entitled to an abortion if they are carrying a boy, and vice versa, Professor Wendy Savage has claimed.
Professor Savage, who is a retired obstetrician and gynaecologist, believes that forcing women to continue the pregnancy could be detrimental to both mother and child’s mental health.
She also believes women should have the right to an abortion at any stage of the pregnancy.
Prof. Savage made these claims after a proposal for the decriminalisation of abortion passed through the House of Commons in the UK.
Her stance could spark some strong reactions from pro-choice and pro-life parties.
Prof. Savage made it clear that sex-selective abortions were a ‘myth’ and has slammed NHS hospitals that refuse to disclose a baby’s sex.
Currently, parents who wish to find out the sex of their baby are able to do so during an 18 week scan, but some hospitals have a policy that doesn’t allow them to disclose the baby’s sex.
“Because of this sort of anxiety some places won’t tell the woman the sex of the foetus, which is outrageous.
“It’s her body and her foetus, so she should have that information … if a woman does not want to have a foetus who is one sex or the other, forcing her (to go through with the pregnancy) is not going to be good for the eventual child, and it’s not going to be good for (the mother’s) mental health.” Prof. Savage stated.
Under current UK laws, it is illegal for a woman to have an abortion after 24 weeks for non-medical reasons, and each procedure must be signed off by two doctors before it can go ahead.
“It is a woman’s right to decide. It’s her body. She is the one taking the risks.
“The foetus is a potential human life at that stage (in the womb); it is not an actual human life … I think you’ve got to concentrate on the (rights of the) woman.”
Last week, the parliament voted in favour of the Reproductive Health (Access to Terminations) Bill, which would remove criminal sanctions for women and doctors in England and Wales and place regulation with professional bodies. But Christian MP Maria Caulfield warned the change could bring about a rise in “back street abortions”.
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