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21 August 2010

AR update, 21 August 2010

Judge condemns forced contraception plan; GPs to gain commissioning powers; Next-generation emergency contraceptive pill gains FDA approval, and more ...

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- 1. UK: JUDGE CONDEMNS FORCED CONTRACEPTION PLAN

A council’s plan to force contraception upon a woman with a low IQ was ‘essentially a horrendous prospect’ that has ‘shades of social engineering’, a judge has said.

Mr Justice Bodey said he could not see how it could be acceptable for the court to impose contraception ‘by way of physical coercion’. He said the local authority’s plan, to stop the 29-year-old woman having more children, ‘would raise profound questions about State intervention in private and family life’.

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- 2. MOTHERHOOD, ABORTION AND PARENTING CULTURE

At a recent conference, supported by BPAS, academics from the UK and USA discussed new challenges to women’s autonomy:

—Abortion and reproductive decision-making in a culture of ‘intensive parenting’;
—Assisted conception and the limits of choice;
—The pregnant woman’s autonomy in an era of increasing lifestyle surveillance and sensitivity to fetal harm;
—Changing ideas about motherhood and fatherhood.

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- 3. UK: GPs TO GAIN COMMISSIONING POWERS

GP practices are set to be handed responsibility for most health services under ministerial plans for a radical shake-up of the National Health Service in England.

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- 4. USA: ‘ELLA’ EMERGENCY CONTRACEPTIVE PILL WINS FDA APPROVAL

A next-generation emergency contraceptive pill that can prevent unwanted pregnancy up to five days after unprotected sex has gained final approval from the Food and Drug Administration.

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- 5. UK: MAJOR PHARMACY PLANS TO SELL EMERGENCY CONTRACEPTION ONLINE

Boots has launched a website enabling customers to purchase certain treatments online without the need of a prescription.

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- 6. USA: IMMEDIATE POSTABORTAL INSERTION OF INTRAUTERINE DEVICES

In this study, from the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, the authors concluded that insertion of an IUD immediately after abortion is safe and practical. IUD expulsion rates appear higher than after interval insertions. However, IUD use is higher at six months with immediate than with interval insertion.

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- 7. UK: GOVERNMENT CONSULTATION ON FAMILY PLANNING IN THE DEVELOPING WORLD

The UK Government is to ‘put family planning at the heart of its approach to women’s health in the developing world’ in an attempt to reduce the persistently high number of women who die in pregnancy and childbirth, the Secretary of State for International Development has announced.

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- 8. ‘CHOOSING TOMORROW’S CHILDREN’

John Gillott reviews Stephen Wilkinson’s new book on the ethics of selective reproduction. 

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- 9. ‘ALWAYS GLAD TO RECEIVE IT’: RESULTS OF THE ABORTION REVIEW READERS’ SURVEY

Many thanks to those of you who took part in our 2010 survey. We received dozens of responses from readers around the world.

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