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Victorian Womens Health Atlas

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Monitoring the Abortion Law Reform Act

WHV has been monitoring the implementation of the Abortion Law Reform Act to ensure that the legal changes become a reality for women in Victoria. It recently came to our attention that the Victorian branch of the AMA had posted a template on their website for doctors with a conscientious objection to abortion to use as a notice in their surgeries.

WHV had a number of concerns about the wording of that template, including the fact that it did not reflect that in general, doctors are providing information about abortion services, rather than only abortion services. It privileged the doctor’s ‘moral and ethical’ beliefs over the woman’s need to make an informed decision and it placed the onus (and guilt) on the woman to refrain from asking for services that the doctor would rather not provide.

We discussed our concerns with the AMA(Vic) and advocated for a change in the wording of the template. The AMA(Vic) took these concerns on board and we are pleased with the revised version, which can be accessed here.