Hospitals with Catholic ethos expected to carry out abortions – Varadkar

Irish hospitals with a Catholic ethos will be expected to carry out abortions when the country’s new laws on terminations come into effect, the Taoiseach has made clear.

Leo Varadkar said while individual doctors, nurses or midwives could opt out of performing procedures on conscience grounds, entire institutions will not have that option.

Mr Varadkar was addressing concerns about surgical abortions raised in the Dail by Solidarity–People Before Profit TD Mick Barry.

The government is drafting legislation that will allow for any woman to request an abortion up to 12 weeks, subject to a cooling off period, and will allow abortion in extreme cases between 12 and 24 weeks.

It comes after citizens last month voted two-to-one in a historic referendum to repeal the state’s constitutional ban on abortions.

The Taoiseach said the legislation would follow the model of the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act 2013, which allowed for terminations in extreme medical circumstances, and allow individual medics to opt out.

“It will not, however, be possible for publicly funded hospitals, no matter who their patron or owner is, to opt of providing these necessary services which will be legal in this state once this legislation is passed by the Dail and Seanad,” he added.

“I’m happy to give you that assurance.”

Mr Varadkar added: “That legislation will allow individuals to opt out based on their consciences or their religious convictions but will not allow institutions to do so.

“So just as is the case now in the legislation for the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act 2013, hospitals like for example Holles Street, which is a Catholic voluntary ethos hospital, the Mater, St Vincent’s and others will be required and will be expected to carry out any procedure that is legal in this state and that is the model we will follow.”

- Press Association


Related Articles

Latest: Health minister says it is 'sad' that exclusion zones are required around maternity hospitals

Sinn Féin votes to fully support unrestricted abortion access up to 12 weeks after a landslide vote

Women in NI should be given same abortion access as those in Republic and UK - Taoiseach

Rival campaigns welcome Supreme Court ruling on abortion services

More in this Section

Hillary Clinton praises 'grassroots activism' in Ireland's abortion referendum

People urged to be safe in the sun this weekend

One of the four men on trial for murder owed €9,000 to victim, court hears

€50k worth of drugs alcohol and cigarettes seized across the country


Today's Stories

Applied maths adds up for students as Leaving Cert exams finish

Ireland joins group to negotiate drug prices

Family told mobile home had to go

Up to 40 caravans ordered to leave retail park

Lifestyle

New father’s life ‘changed forever’ after he was run over by surgeon

More From The Irish Examiner