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TTMA Statement: Legislation on Abortion

Illegal Abortions have been an issue in T&T for decades and by law, remain an illegal act in this country unless the life of the mother is deemed at risk by two Specialists.

We are aware that other regional islands have had changes to their legislature on abortion based on socioeconomic grounds. We are only too aware of the short comings of our health care system in providing support for children with special needs, and persons with neurological deficits.

We note too the 2012 statistics that show that approximately 10% of maternal deaths in the Caribbean and Latin America are as a result of illegal abortions.

(Facts on Abortion in Latin America And the Caribbean)

So while we agree that any crisis, like Zika, should absolutely prompt discourse, the T&TMA strongly feel that policy and legislature change can only come about after thorough, informed, holistic consultation with all stakeholders, especially on such a sensitive topic.

As doctors we are charged with protecting the life of all our patients, mothers and their unborn children alike, both of whom have rights that must be considered. The T&TMA welcome the opportunity to join in discussions with all other stakeholders on this matter.