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Last Updated: Wednesday, 24 September, 2003, 10:41 GMT 11:41 UK
Abortion figure concerns
It is claimed abortion figures for Jersey do not give a true picture of the number of terminations being carried out on women on the island.

Figures published by the Medical Officer of Health in a report to States members said 265 abortions were carried out in 2002, a decrease from just over 300 in 2001.

However, Fiona Hagg, president of Alliance for Life, says she believes there has been a rise in the number of women taking the morning-after pill and having abortions in the UK.

Meanwhile, a Jersey advisory service says it wants to see contraceptive pills provided free for women over 25.

It's a huge problem
Fiona Hagg
The Medical Officer of Health reported to the States that most of the abortions carried out at Jersey's General Hospital were for women between the ages of 14 and 24. More than 70% of them were single.

The report also said for more than three quarters of the women, it was their first legal abortion, but that some women have had up to three terminations.

But Fiona Hagg claimed the figures released showing a drop in the number from more than 300 terminations do not paint a true picture.

She said: "It's a huge problem. No one has taken into consideration that we have a really huge use of the morning-after pill, particularly with young people.

"The purpose of the pill is to destroy any pregnancy that may have ensued after unprotected sex."

Meanwhile, Jersey's Brook Advisory Clinic wants to see contraceptive pills provided free for women over 25.

Younger people can already get free prescriptions, but the centre claims some older women may not be able to afford them.

Brook manager Bronia Lever said help with contraception could prevent so many needing abortions.

She said: "Now I know we all think that probably they should pay. But there are ladies out there who maybe don't have a well-paid job and can't afford to pay.

"Because they're in that bracket, maybe we ought to be selective in the services we provide for free."

Centre sees numbers double
04 Aug 03  |  Europe
Home abortions call triggers row
26 Jun 03  |  Health

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