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Abortion and Related Controversies

Abortion has a long history of being a topic of debate in the social, political, as well as economic scenario. Defined as the termination of the pregnancy induced by various methods or spontaneous in some cases, abortion has been practiced directly or indirectly since olden times. Different types of health risks, when performed by unskilled individuals, often accompany it. Hence, various laws have been framed all over the world in order to prevent the incidence of unsafe abortion according to the sociocultural and religious beliefs of the respective countries.

Planned Parenthood has been practiced and legalized in some countries due to various reasons such as in case of breast cancer awareness, etc. However, this has resulted in furor among some religious groups leading to debate. Recent cases surrounding abortion have initiated a new way of thinking among the masses to view abortion in a different light. Some cases of pregnancy in which the life of the mother is at serious risk necessitate abortion to protect the mother. However, in some cases, women having unwanted pregnancies misuse this. Hence, it is very important for the doctors to analyses the medical condition of the woman thoroughly before taking the step of abortion of the fetus.

The legislation of different countries has framed different laws associated with legal abortion. Up to the 24th week of pregnancy, legal abortion is possible in UK, Wales, and Scotland, although the time limit restriction is lifted in cases of pregnancies involving possible physical or mental injuries to the mother or possible abnormalities in the fetus. Ireland has strict catholic anti-abortion laws that prevent abortion even in case of serious health risk associated with pregnancy for the woman. The recent case of the death of a dentist, 19 weeks pregnant, denied abortion by the physicians in spite of severe health complications in pregnancy, has initiated serious discussions on legalizing abortion with regulation, in cases of pregnancy involving serious physical or mental health risks of the woman. However, it remains to be seen if the laws are applied in cases of pregnancies associated with rape or sexual abuse. In Australia, the laws governing abortion are still inconsistent as well as unclear and confusing between the different regions within the country. In India, the abortion laws come under the medical termination of pregnancy act. Legalization of abortion in case of rape, contraceptive device failure, etc has been done to help women in distress for no fault of theirs, within 12 weeks and maximum 20 weeks.

It ought to be remembered that the life of the mother bringing a new life into the world is important and laws must be framed keeping this in mind. A woman subjected to severe health complications during pregnancy would not be able to bring a healthy offspring, which would ultimately lead to several complications within the family and the society in future.