Organizations condemn insistence on rules requiring doctors to notify the police of abortions

In a statement, more than 140 organizations claim that the new measure by the Ministry of Health still infringes on the autonomy of the victims and on the professional secrecy of the medical team

In a public statement released on Tuesday, September 29, more than 140 civil society organizations condemned the publication of a new Ministry of Health order that retains the obligation for doctors to notify the police when abortions are performed on women and girls who are rape victims.

The requirement, considered illegal by human rights organizations, was already contained in the previous ministerial order that was published in August and repealed by this latest measure. Other serious points, such as the requirement to offer patients an ultrasound visualization of the fetus prior to the procedure, were removed.

“It infringes on the autonomy of the woman to require notification to the police as a condition for a legal procedure to take place,” reads an excerpt of the statement. “The ministerial order also violates the principle of professional secrecy of the health professionals involved,” it concludes.

The organizations note that, despite the social mobilization behind the position of the Ministry of Health, the new measure retains the essence of the previous order that sought to make the process more bureaucratic and distressing, requiring a series of steps and obstacles for the performance of a procedure that is already guaranteed by law.

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