Fintan O’Toole is once again spreading his pro-abortion propaganda and in presenting his view that the loss of a baby resulting from an ectopic pregnancy is an abortion he fails to take account of evidence presented to a previous Oireachtas Committee by the then Chairman of the Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists Professor John Bonnar, who told the Committee,
“It would never cross an obstetrician’s mind that intervening in a case of pre-eclampsia, cancer of the cervix or ectopic pregnancy is abortion. They are not abortion as far as the professional is concerned, these are medical treatments that are essential to save the life of the mother.”
O'Toole also fails to take into account the unfortunate loss which has befallen many women who have lost their much wanted babies in this way and in addition to this may also have had to deal with the consequences of the loss of a fallopian tube and a resultant reduction in fertility levels.
Fintan asks a question and answers it promptly himself:
HOW DO you make a problem go away? The Irish answer, of course, is to pretend it doesn’t exist. But in the age of statistics, there is a special refinement to this strategy – make sure it doesn’t show up in the numbers.
Is Fintan so determined to have abortion introduced here in Ireland that he is insensitive to, or does not care about the offence he is giving by telling women who have suffered such a terrible loss that she actually had an abortion?
O'Toole's claims and those and various other correspondents are ably answered by Niamh Ui Bhriain in today's Irish Times;
Sir, – Fintan O’Toole (Opinion Analysis, September 4th) claims that treatment for an ectopic pregnancy is an abortion. According to the most senior medical professionals dealing with pregnancy, he is wrong. As the then chairman of the Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, Prof John Bonner, told an Oireachtas Committee, “It would never cross an obstetrician’s mind that intervening in a case of pre-eclampsia, cancer of the cervix or ectopic pregnancy is abortion. They are not abortion as far as the professional is concerned, these are medical treatments that are essential to save the life of the mother.”
Niall Behan (September 6th) claims that women with life-threatening conditions are travelling to the UK to avail of abortions. He offers no verifiable evidence of this claim and – again – he is contradicted by the evidence of the institute, which also told the Oireachtas committee that their members “could preserve mother’s lives and health without abortion”.
The claim made by Jacky Jones (a former HSE employee) went further again, however (HEALTHplus, September 4th).
Seeking to disprove the fact that Ireland is the safest place in the world for a mother to have a baby, Dr Jones claimed that a recent ESRI report showed that Ireland was “the 15th safest place to give birth among 22 European countries”. But the ESRI report deals only with perinatal mortality (the death of children just before or after birth) and not with maternal mortality. Such an error is astonishing.
Spin and scaremongering has no place in this debate. Abortion advocates need to get their facts straight. – Yours, etc,
NIAMH UÍ BHRIAIN,
The Life Institute,