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Queensland abortion law expansion expected

Queensland abortion law expansion expected

With more hospitals in Queensland closing the door on drug-induced pregnancy terminations, the Queensland Government has signalled it will rewrite aspects of its abortion laws to avoid…

With more hospitals in Queensland closing the door on drug-induced pregnancy terminations, the Queensland Government has signalled it will rewrite aspects of its abortion laws to avoid confusion.

Premier Anna Bligh said yesterday that it was likely that a section of the Criminal Code would be extended to cover the authorised use of abortion drugs such as pill RU486 - offering doctors a common-law defence to avoid a statutory ban on abortion.

The Australian reports that the premier has insisted the Government would not be pressured by doctors and pro-choice groups to decriminalise abortion in Queensland - but that her Government would seek to offer an extension of protections under the Criminal Code that already allow doctors to carry out surgical abortions.

The move comes after some medical abortion service providers in Queensland were reported to be reviewing their position on the matter, and seeking legal advice on whether the relevant section of the Criminal Code which allow doctors to perform otherwise banned surgical abortions if likely to preserve the health or life of the mother also allows such abortions via drug-induced medical terminations.

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