Abortions of babies with Down’s syndrome and other serious disabilities are on the rise after the introduction of new blood tests, according to figures published by the Department of Health.
Last year, nearly 3,100 women chose to end their pregnancies after the detection of a serious disability compared with 2,300 in 2011.
According to the MailOnline, the figures also show that in 2011 146 abortions were also carried out after the legal limit of 24 weeks, however, by 2014, this figure had risen by 44 per cent to 211 abortions.
There are new privately available tests costing £500 that provide a way of finding out about disabilities such as Down’s, Edwards’ and Patau syndromes without endangering the life of the unborn child.
However, there are some concerns that healthy children might still be aborted in error as the tests are only 99 per cent accurate.
Jane Fisher, director of the charity Antenatal Results and Choices, said: “It’s important to remember that these blood tests are screening, not diagnostic tests.
“So women found to be high-risk should have an amniocentesis to confirm any potential genetic abnormality.”
Having been unable to sell in churches for well over a year due to the pandemic, we are now inviting readers to support the Herald by investing in our future. We have been a bold and influential voice in the church since 1888, standing up for traditional Catholic culture and values.
Please join us on our 130 year mission by supporting us. We are raising £250,000 to safeguard the Herald as a world-leading voice in Catholic journalism and teaching. For more information from our chairman on contributing to the Herald Patron's Fund, click here
Make a Donation
Donors giving £500 or more will automatically become sponsor patrons of the Herald. This includes two complimentary print/digital gift subscriptions, invitations to Patron events, pilgrimages and dinners, and 6 gift subscriptions sent to priests, seminaries, Catholic schools, religious care homes and prison and university chaplaincies. Click here for more information on becoming a Patron Sponsor. Click here for more information about contributing to the Herald Patron's Fund