New Clause 8 — Foetal physical or mental abnormalities: Information and counselling

Orders of the Day – in the House of Commons at 10:00 pm on 20th May 2008.

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'After section 1 of the Abortion Act 1967 (c. 87) (Medical termination of pregnancy) insert—

"1A (1) If tests of a foetus reveal that there is a substantial risk that if the child were born it would suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities as to be seriously handicapped, a registered medical practitioner or a suitably qualified health professional expeditiously shall provide the pregnant woman with—

(a) current, scientific information in a written form concerning:

(i) the life expectancy of;

(ii) the expected intellectual and functional development of; and

(iii) the treatment options for;

a foetus diagnosed with, or a child born with, the physical or mental abnormalities identified as a risk by those tests,

(b) contact details for, where available, supportive service providers, including telephone help lines specific to the physical or mental abnormalities identified as a risk by those tests, and

(c) the offer of a suitable opportunity to receive relevant counselling and such other information as they deem proper.

(2) If, subsequent to the receipt of test results referred to under subsection (1), the pregnant woman notifies a registered medical practitioner that she is considering terminating the pregnancy, either wholly or partly as a result of those test results, then the termination must not take place until the information and offer set out in subsections (1)(a) to (c) have been provided.'. — [Dr. Palmer.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

Question put, That the clause be added to the Bill:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 173, Noes 309.

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Division number 202 Orders of the Day — New Clause 8 — Foetal physical or mental abnormalities: Information and counselling

Aye: 173 MPs

No: 309 MPs

Ayes: A-Z by last name

Tellers

Nos: A-Z by last name

Tellers

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Question accordingly negatived.

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