UK Abortion Statistics


In 2016 according to Department of Health statistics the total number of abortions on residents of England and Wales was 185,596. This number excludes the 4,810 abortions performed on non-residents in the UK. Therefore the total number of abortions performed in England and Wales was 190,406.

Introduction

When an abortion is performed in the UK the reason for it being procured is recorded by a Health Worker and the information kept by the Department of Health.

Many people believe that abortion is necessary to either save the life of the mother or for her physical wellbeing. The statistics tell a different story. In the last 10 years just 16 abortions have been carried out under grounds F or G. As a side note, we have not yet found a medical reason why a woman would need an abortion to save her life.

There are 7 categories, or rather, grounds (listed A-G) to cover just about any scenario.

The Department of Health statistics can be found by clicking here:

The grounds are listed at the end of this article. The statistics are taken from the Department of Health’s publication for 2016, the most recent complete year available.

UK Key Statistics

The following statistics are for both non-residents and residents of England and Wales (190,406) unless otherwise stated.

The number of abortions to actually save the life of the mother (ground F) or in an emergency, to prevent grave permanent injury to the physical or mental health of the pregnant woman (ground G) have been combined with four other grounds because the numbers are either so low or non-existent. The only figure available is that for residents of England and Wales. Combined together, grounds F and G total 6 of the 185,596 abortions.

In 2016 the vast majority (97%) of abortions (185,366) were undertaken under ground C (alone) which is effectively for social reasons. Of these, 99.8% were reported as being performed because of a risk to the woman's mental health, for example if a pregnant woman simply didn't feel ready to give birth to a live child. Only 34 abortions were carried out under ground C due to physical health problems, for example excessive vomiting. 

Abortion numbers by grounds:

  • 0% (actual number 108) abortions were performed under ground A (alone, or  with B, C , D) or F or G
  • 0% (actual number 147) abortions were performed under ground B (alone, or with C or D)
  • 97% (actual number 185,366) abortions were performed under ground C (alone)
  • 1% (actual number 1,349) abortions were performed under ground D (alone, or with C)
  • 2% (actual number 3,436) abortions were performed under ground E (alone, or with A, B ,C or D)

 

Thirty eight per cent of abortions were to women who had had one or more previous abortions. The highest percentage of repeat abortions were to Black or Black British women at 48%.

There were 1,564 abortions carried out on under 16 year olds.

Ninety eight per cent of abortions in 2016 were funded by the NHS.

The Department of Health reports that there were only 294 complications and 1 death due to the abortion procedure. In our opinion this number is misleading as it only takes in to account the complications up to the time of discharge. Therefore any complications that become apparent after discharge are not included.

Ground A: the continuance of the pregnancy would involve risk to the life of the pregnant woman greater than if the pregnancy were terminated (Abortion Act, 1967 as amended, section 1(1)(c))

Ground B: the termination is necessary to prevent grave permanent injury to the physical or mental health of the pregnant woman (section 1(1)(b))

Ground C: the pregnancy has not exceeded its twenty-fourth week and that the continuance of the pregnancy would involve risk, greater than if the pregnancy were terminated, of injury to the physical or mental health of the pregnant woman (section 1(1)(a))

Ground D: the pregnancy has not exceeded its twenty-fourth week and that the continuance of the pregnancy would involve risk, greater than if the pregnancy were terminated, of injury to the physical or mental health of any existing children of the family of the pregnant woman (section 1(1)(a))

Ground E: there is a substantial risk that if the child were born it would suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities as to be seriously handicapped (section 1(1)(d))

or in an emergency, certified by the operating practitioner as immediately necessary:

Ground F: to save the life of the pregnant woman (section 1(4))

Ground G: to prevent grave permanent injury to the physical or mental health of the pregnant woman (section 1(4))


Contact Details

Address: , UK ,

Email: info@abort67.co.uk

Phone: 08448 22 17 67

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