The purpose of this paper “Terminating an Unplanned Pregnancy” is to undertake the analysis of a medical case of Sara who is opting to terminate an unplanned pregnancy. The midwife needs to take legal and ethical obligations into account…
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This will allow midwifery students to understand the significance of undertaking legal and ethical grounds as a base of the decision-making process. This paper shall present the case chosen along with in-depth analysis of the case. The analysis will be followed by the legal and ethical considerations that are applicable to health care services in England and Wales. Also, there will be the inclusion of other cases which is relevant to the laws and a chosen case of termination of pregnancy. II. Case Presentation: Sara presented at the antenatal clinic, pregnant at 22 weeks gestation with her fifth baby. Two days earlier during a scan performed to investigate irregular menstruation Sara had been informed that she was pregnant. The ultrasound scan suggested 21+ weeks, a singleton with no abnormalities detected. The midwife working in the community had provided maternity care throughout Sara’s four previous pregnancies, all of which had been straightforward births resulting in four healthy children. Sara has identified to the midwife that this pregnancy is unplanned and unwanted by both her and her husband. She feels that it would put a strain on her and her family, physically, emotionally and financially. Sara discloses that she is going to terminate this pregnancy. III. Analysis: Considering the case of Sara opting for the termination of pregnancy, there are two main areas to be taken into account by the health practitioners. These areas are rather in terms of legal and ethical grounds. With due consideration to the case of Sara, it can be said that her case has both moral and legal grounds of analysis. The distinction can also be noted in her case in terms of ethical and legal grounds mainly because of the debated issue of abortion (Beauchamp and Childress 2008). The analysis of the case of Sara is being conducted under the legal statuses of abortion and similar cases are also important to the base of analysis. Following are the two distinctive grounds that need to be focused by midwife responsible for the termination of pregnancy case of Sara. The case of Sara should not be considered as an overly debated case because of the adherence to Abortion Act. However, there is a significant difference between the legal and ethical grounds of the case (Harris 2002). IV. Legal Considerations: Legal Status for Abortion: The appeal of Sara for terminating the unplanned pregnancy can be taken into consideration because as per the abortion principle of England and Wales, it is as per the law. The principles as governed by the Abortion Act 1967 defenses the appeal for pregnancy termination of Sara because it states that abortion can be done if the pregnancy has not passed it's twenty-four weeks. The principles have further been amended by the Human Fertilization and Embryology Act of 1990 that if the pregnancy is probable to cause injury to the physical or mental health of the woman or any existing children of her family then medical practitioners must terminate the fetus (Pattinson 2009). It should be noted that cases like Sara being noted in other states of UK are not being consulted as in Wales and England because the abortion act in Ireland is being addressed by the Offences Against The Person Act 1861.
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