Anti-Abortion GPs Argue Against Being Forced to Refer Patients
A draft of abortion legislation provided that doctors, nurses, and midwives who have a conscientious objection to abortion must refer their patients to another provider who will perform the abortion. The National Association of GPs (NAGP) voted to "advocate for conscientious objection, without obligation to refer" and for an "opt-in" system, where medical professionals register their willingness to perform the procedure, rather than an "opt-out system.
The legislation said medical providers must make arrangements for a woman to "transfer her care" to "enable the woman to [terminate the] pregnancy. The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children noted, "such referrals make the first doctor complicit in the abortion, sending out the message that the doctor's objection and concern for the welfare of the patient and her baby is simply not strong enough to stop the doctor acting as a go-between."
Draft legislation: HEALTH (REGULATION OF TERMINATION OF PREGNANCY) BILL 2018