At The Mercy of The State

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The woman refused an abortion has spoken with The irish Times about her experience.

Over the following weeks, she says, she had a number of meetings at the IFPA [Irish Family Planning Association] and though the process seemed to be in train she was told some weeks later that the estimated cost of travelling to England, having the abortion and possible overnight accommodation could be over €1,500. An individual in the IFPA, she says, told her the State would not fund the costs

“I said we’re getting too far, and she said, no, in England they carry out abortions up to 28 weeks . . . She said ‘that is not the problem. The problem is the money’.

“The next day, around 10am, I was taken in a taxi to another hospital . . . When we got there I thought they were going to help me. They brought me to a room where they did a scan and the pregnancy was 24 weeks and one day . . .They said they could not do an abortion. I said, ‘You can leave me now to die. I don’t want to live in this world anymore’.”

…On Monday night two doctors came, a psychiatrist and a gynaecologist, and said, ‘We are going to carry out the abortion next Monday but you have to be strong. You have to eat. You have to drink.’ I started to eat and I drank.”

She says she was told a few days later that the plan had changed.

“They said the pregnancy was too far. It was going to have to be a Caesarean section . . . They said wherever you go in the world, the United States, anywhere, at this point it has to be a Caesarean.

She says that a number of days later, two medics told her the authorities had been made aware of her situation and she would need a solicitor….

They said they could not do an abortion. I said, ‘You can leave me now to die. I don’t want to live in this world anymore’ (Kitty Holland, Ruadhán Mac Cormaic, Irish Times)