Employers should be aware of recently amended abortion regulations

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Francesca Steyn – Peppy

April 27, 2022





Employers should ensure they are aware of the latest amendments to the Abortion Act 1967 which was recently updated in parliament.

The decision authorizes consultations and prescription by telephone or videoconference and early (non-surgical) medical termination, before 10 weeks of gestation, remotely in non-complex cases.

The amendment, voted on by MPs on March 30, 2022, makes permanent a temporary change that was put in place during the peak of Covid-19 when there were travel restrictions and access to medical services was limit.

Deciding to terminate prematurely is extremely sensitive and although taking the abortion pill is, in most cases, considered medically low risk, the situation and associated problems can be stressful and anxiety provoking. Few employees will want to divulge the details to their line manager or the human resources department, but it can be very helpful for employees to have access to specialist women’s health support to ask questions about the drug itself. , long-term health issues and mental health support. also.

Francesca Steyn, Director of Fertility and Women’s Health Services at Peppy said: “Telemedicine and digital health care are among the real success stories of the pandemic in many areas of health, including for early abortions.

“Employers need to take notice of the amendment to ensure that women’s rights are also supported in the workplace. Employees who were born female and those who were designated female at birth have the right to have autonomy over their health, and employers can support this.

The change is said to benefit women by allowing those who need early termination access to faster, safer and more effective medications and deterring the use of unauthorized interventions. The change will also benefit vulnerable women who cannot attend in-person appointments, perhaps due to a controlling partner or domestic violence.

Francesca Steyn continued: “We are delighted Parliament has made this change permanent and hope it bodes well for the government’s next women’s health strategy. Hopefully the tide will turn in providing access to these underserved areas of women’s health. Employers who also champion women’s health care in the workplace will also not go unnoticed by existing staff and job seekers.

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