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UK Abortions Increase Among Married Women in Their 30s

Illustration for article titled UK Abortions Increase Among Married Women in Their 30s

In the UK, abortions are on the rise for married women in their 30s for the second year in a row, according to the Office for National Statistics. As it stands, about one in 10 pregnant married women are getting abortions. This comes at a time that abortion rates, over all, have fallen for the nation.

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The British Pregnancy Advisory Services (BPAS) suggests that married women in their 30s—typically thought thought to be the most stable, baby-ready demographic—are seeking terminations as a result of the poor economy, with "financial worries leading to more unwanted pregnancies." It added that a decrease in vasectomies in the last decade could also be a contributing factor. Ultimately, though, does the reason really matter? The important thing here is that women in England, Scotland, and Wales are able to make their own choices with regards to their own bodies because they have access to that kind of treatment through the NHS, without the politically-imposed, moral red tape that plagues many states in America.

But just because abortions in the UK are free of charge doesn't mean that women treat it like an open bar, double fisting their terminations. For example, teen pregnancies there are at their lowest level ever recorded. But the number of abortions among minors has fallen by 13 percent in a year, meaning that teenagers are taking advantage of access to birth control instead of freebie abortions.

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Image via Globe Turner/Shutterstock

Abortion among married women in their 30s 'on the rise' [Telegraph]

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DISCUSSION

"Ultimately, though, does the reason really matter?"

Well, yeah, I think it does. If the increase is due to improved access to abortion services, that's a good thing. If the increase is due to more families having financial problems, that's a general negative indication about the health of the country's economy. If the increase is due to reduced access to birth control, or a shift from using reliable methods to less reliable ones, then perhaps that means there should be some intervention to reduce the unwanted pregnancy rate.

The fact that the US has things much worse doesn't mean other countries shouldn't look at things like this when evaluating their public health services.