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Health secretary sparks controversy by his support for a 12 week limit for abortion

BMJ 2012; 345 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.e6796 (Published 08 October 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;345:e6796
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1BMJ

The new Conservative health secretary for England, Jeremy Hunt, has sparked an outcry by voicing support for a cut in the upper limit for abortion from 24 weeks’ gestation to 12.

The furore over his remarks, given in an interview with the Times newspaper on the eve of the Conservative Party’s annual conference, forced the prime minister, David Cameron, to issue assurances that the UK’s Conservative led coalition government had no plans to reform the abortion laws.

Hunt’s declaration of his “personal view” came after a call for a 20 week limit from Maria Miller, minister for equalities, prompting concerns that the government might be planning to change the law. The home …

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