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DIY Home Abortions

Initially introduced as a temporary emergency measure during COVID, the Government later conducted a public consultation. Despite 70% of respondents (18,000 in total) urging it to “end immediately”, Parliament ignored this and voted to make them permanent.

Monthly consequences include:

  • 550 women needing hospital treatment
  • 250 women requiring surgery to remove baby or placenta remains 
  • 22 women treated for haemorrhage
  • The tragic deaths of 9,400 babies

This is a public health emergency.

How the abortion pills work

The first pill, mifepristone, blocks the hormone progesterone needed for the continuation of the pregnancy, effectively suffocating the baby. The second abortion pill, taken 24-48 hours later, is called misoprostol and causes contractions expelling the baby.

The instructions accompanying these pills recommend the baby “be flushed down the lavatory or wrapped in tissue, placed in a small plastic bag and put in the dustbin”. 

Impact on babies

Since these measures were introduced over 390,000 unborn babies have been killed and ejected in homes without any in person medical checks or medical supervision. Most of these babies were between 3-9 weeks old when killed, but not all. 

Within months of introducing these measures, the abortion industry and the Department of Health knew of many cases where babies were being killed illegally beyond 10 weeks. Six months after DIY abortion was introduced 52 babies were killed beyond 10 weeks, with 4 beyond 24 weeks. One of these is thought to be Lily Foster, who was killed between 32-34 weeks by her mother Carla Foster. Another two ladies are due in court early next year (2024) over similar charges. 

Impact on women’s health

“I just remember lifting up my blanket and it being like a scene from a horror movie”
“I was left really heavily bleeding for months afterwards. I was at a point where I didn’t wanna wake up anymore because I’ve lost a part of me”.
"my home is not my home, my happy safe place. It’s the place where it took away my child"

Kirsty, 36, from Midlands, tells her story to March for Life UK. She is not alone.

Despite these emerging testimonies, the abortion industry praised these measures, calling them a "revolution" during the pandemic. Yet grassroots research reveals a devastating impact on women's physical and mental health. 

Physical health

Data from 2021 shows that over 500 women per month (1 in 17) who use these pills require hospital treatment. Of these, 250 require surgical procedures to remove what is left of the baby or placenta. 22 women a month need treatment for haemorrhage. Ambulance calls related to medical abortion have also surged by 164%.

Mental health

Mental health concerns are also significant. Abortion, even when conducted in clinics, is linked to an 81% increased risk of mental health problems (Colemans 2012 study). A US study  from June 2023 found higher use of mental health services after a first-pregnancy abortion compared to childbirth. With increased interaction between women and their dead babies under DIY abortion, there are fears of a growing mental health impact.

Personal testimonies of DIY home abortions

  • Natalia's abortion experience during lockdown "ruined”  her
  • “the pain was unbearable. I was lying on my bathroom floor, curled in a ball” Courtney Barns, 27, shares in the Daily Mail
  • Lucy Barnes, a Sunday Times best-selling author, stated “after the abortion, I had a mental breakdown” 
  • In the Carla Foster Case, the judge acknowledged her deep remorse, guilt, depression, and emotional attachment to the unborn child (paragraph 20)
  • BPAS also lists "psychological problems" as significant risks on its abortion pills page

More testimonies available on the Care for Women website.

Impact on NHS

Instead of safeguarding the NHS, DIY abortions have led to problems for women's health, necessitating visits to Accident and Emergency Departments. 

Monthly consequences include:

  • 550 women needing hospital treatment
  • 250 women requiring surgery to remove baby or placenta remains 
  • 22 women treated for haemorrhage
  • Treating psychological trauma and pain management

In terms of the financial burden on the NHS, data from North Wales through Freedom of Information requests indicates that abortion providers charge £77 for phone consultations and £344.80 for abortion pills. The total  estimated cost to the NHS DIY home abortions since introduced has reached £134 million. This excludes the cost of treating complications listed above. 

Who’s responsible?

Heavily influenced by the abortion industry and certain government officials, DIY abortion was approved and legalised by Conservative MPs and peers, with some support from Labour. 

Here's a simplified timeline:

  • December 28, 2018: Health Secretary Matt Hancock approved the use of the second abortion pill at home
  • March 30, 2020: Health Secretary Matt Hancock expanded this to approve both abortion pills at home as a temporary measure to ease NHS pressure
  • November 2020: The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) initiated a consultation on making this policy permanent. Most respondents (70%) favoured ending the measures
  • May 2020: Pre-action disclosure information revealed a direct line of communication between abortion executives and senior civil servants within the health and social care department. Some employees had ties to MSI international and reproductive health
  • February 2022: New Health Secretary Sajid Javid announced the discontinuation of DIY abortion in August 2022
  • March 2022: Conservative Peer Baroness Sugg proposed an amendment to make DIY abortion permanent, which was voted on late at night. The amendment, known as Abortion (Amendment) 2022, later received support in the commons from Labour MP Stella Creasy and became law

Public opinion

Public opinion strongly opposes DIY home abortion:

  • An independent poll in December revealed that 71% of the public worry about women having abortions at home
  • A government consultation initiated in November 2020 and published a year later indicated that 70% of respondents believe these measures should stop immediately
  • In an April 2023 survey by CBR UK, 71% of respondents, including 63% of self-identified pro-choice individuals, deemed DIY abortion unacceptable

Speaking to the general public, we have found so many are ignorant of what is happening with DIY home abortions.

WATCH VIDEO below to see individuals responding:

What can you do?

SHARE THIS PAGE and SHARE VIDEO above to raise awareness on this public health emergency.