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Island’s progressive abortion reforms in operation from today

Friday, 24 May 2019

The Isle of Man Abortion Reform Act 2019 comes into effect today, 24 May 2019.

All steps in the formation of an historic piece of legislation, which began as a Private Member’s Bill two years ago, are complete. Regulations setting out how the new law will be enforced were agreed in Tynwald this week, paving the way for the Act to become operational in Manx law from today.

Women in the Island seeking a termination will be directed to a dedicated telephone hotline and website address to receive confidential advice, support and information on abortion treatment services, provided by the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS).

Callers will speak to trained specialists from BPAS and the line is entirely dedicated to calls from the Isle of Man. BPAS is the UK’s leading abortion care service, with a 50 year track record.

The number is +44 1624 642521.

Alternatively, a confidential call-back can be requested by contacting BPAS.

This is a self-referral service - women do not have to wait to be referred by any health professional, including their GP.

Today marks the start of a new chapter in women’s reproductive healthcare in the Isle of Man. The reforms decriminalise abortion making it possible for women have a termination on request within the first 14 weeks of pregnancy, under specified circumstances during the 15-24-week period, and in certain situations after 24 weeks. Local counselling services are in place and will be made available to women before and after a termination.

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