Limerick doctors join growing list of Doctors for Yes

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Limerick doctors have joined a growing list of practicing Irish doctors signing up to Doctors for Yes, calling for a Yes vote on May 25th to repeal the Eighth Amendment.

Limerick-based doctor, Dr Karen Given commented: “Having previously worked in Woman’s Health Clinics, I have witnessed first-hand the terrible impact the Eighth Amendment has on Irish women at a particularly vulnerable time in their lives. At least 10 Irish women travel abroad every day to access safe abortion services but unfortunately this is not a viable option for those women who cannot travel for health or financial reasons. These women often have to resort to putting themselves in danger by taking abortion pills at home without medical supervision. I’m voting yes on May 25th to ensure safer, more compassionate healthcare for all women in Ireland.”

Over 3,200 women travelled from Ireland in 2016 to access abortion care abroad and a further estimated 1,500 took abortion pills at home without medical supervision or support. In Limerick, 99 women travelled in 2016 and many more have done so since. A GP risks prosecution and losing their medical license if they offer care to a woman diagnosed with a fatal foetal anomaly, a woman pregnant as a result of rape or a woman in a crisis pregnancy.

A growing number of Irish medical practitioners are publicly calling for a Yes vote in May’s referendum which would introduce a doctor-led, safe and legal system of care for women in Ireland who need access to abortion services.

The evidence shows, the referendum proposal is the only way to compassionately support victims of rape who become pregnant, couples who receive the heart-breaking news of fatal foetal anomaly or women whose health is put at risk by a pregnancy. Irish doctors including GPs and obstetricians are calling for healthcare to be taken out of the courts and returned to doctors and their patients where it belongs.

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