The one per cent abortion solution

Letters to the Editor (The Guardian)
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Editor: In May 2014, the National Abortion Federation presented a business case to the P.E.I. government with the purpose of making abortion services available to women in P.E.I.  The plan was cost-neutral.  In other words, adopting the plan would not result in a significant amount of cost savings.

The business case that I would now like to present will decrease the amount of money spent on providing abortion services to about one per cent of what it is now.

I’m sure most of you are familiar with the fact that P.E.I. will only pay for abortions judged to be medically necessary. What you may not be familiar with is the fact that the definition of ‘medically necessary’ is not defined in Canadian law. Nor is it defined by the federal government.  

According to the Canada Health Act, it is the provincial governments, in conjunction with their colleges of physicians, who are responsible for defining what is medically necessary.

In other words, the constitutionally granted jurisdiction of provinces over health care leaves room for provincial governments to determine whether and when abortions are medically necessary and, as such, whether to fund them and in which circumstances.

If the P.E.I. government were to limit the definition of when an abortion is medically necessary to addressing only the potential physical harm to a mother experiencing certain complications during pregnancy, and nothing else, we taxpayers would no longer have to pay for an expensive birth control method. The amount of abortions required would be considerably less than one per cent.

I invite you to read the Canada Health Act and see for yourself that the P.E.I. government indeed has the power described above. You may then wish to inform the government that as a taxpayer you are no longer interested in paying for any unnecessary abortions.

Further, you might add you believe the funding of abortions for socio-economic reasons represents an extreme waste of health care resources that could be put to much better use elsewhere.

Tell them that you are in favour of the one per cent solution.

Rolf Tomlins


Organizations: National Abortion Federation

Geographic location: P.E.I., Canada

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