LET’S PLAY “SPOT THE ISSUE” SHALL WE? I’M GOING TO GIVE YOU 5 PIECES OF INFORMATION AND YOU HAVE TO FIGURE OUT WHAT THE PROBLEM REALLY IS


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1. TONY ABBOTT GETS TO DECIDE WHETHER WOMEN CAN HAVE RU486 OR NOT….. "We shouldn't be letting Tony make these decisions, not because it's Tony's fault - he's not a trained medical doctor." An expert medical report will challenge official advice to the federal Minister for Health, Tony Abbott, that the abortion drug RU486 is risky, fuelling pressure on the Prime Minister to allow a conscience vote on the issue. 2. CURRENTLY…. The most common type of abortion is a surgical procedure called a suction curette. This involves the removal of the lining and the contents of the uterus by applying gentle suction to the inside of the uterus with a small plastic tube. This is a safe, simple and low risk procedure when done between 7-12 weeks of pregnancy. The procedure takes about 15 minutes, but you will need to be at the clinic or hospital for about four hours. About 80,000 women in Australia have abortions each year. (Health Insurance Commission 2001) Source 3. WE DON’T HAVE ACCESS TO RU486 (THE ABORTION PILL) BECAUSE… The requirement of ministerial approval continues to discourage pharmaceutical companies and organisations from applying to distribute Mifepristone in Australia. As the Therapeutic Goods Administration application process works on a cost recovery basis, the expense involved for the sponsoring company can be very great. Companies are unwilling to undertake this expense for Mifepristone, when the Minister may overturn the approval by the Therapeutic Goods Administration. There are no guidelines for Ministerial approval and the current Federal Minister for Health, Hon Tony Abbott MP, holds an anti-choice position. Source 4. WHAT IS RU486 (AKA MIFEPRISTONE/MISOPROSTOL) ANYWAY?…. Mifepristone (formerly known as RU-486) is a medication that blocks the action of the hormone progesterone. Progesterone is needed to sustain a pregnancy. Mifepristone is used in combination with another medication, a prostaglandin analogue called misoprostol. Misoprostol causes the uterus to contract, and helps the pregnancy tissue to pass. Approximately 95% of women will have a complete abortion when using mifepristone/misoprostol up to 49 days after the start of the last menstrual period. The remaining women will need a suction abortion either because of ongoing or excessive bleeding, an incomplete abortion (tissue remains in the uterus but there is no growing embryo), or an ongoing pregnancy (a viable growing pregnancy, which occurs in less than 1% of cases). Source 5. THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN The reader poll on the SMH website today tells us: RU486 abortion pill - Where do you stand? Ban should stay - 13% Release it now - 70% Release it with more rural supervision - 15% Undecided - 3% Total Votes: 3116 Totally random sampling, but it does tell us the 85% of people who bothered to vote were in favour of access to RU484. More serious studies of attitudes to abortion back this up 81.2% of Australians strongly agree or agree that women should have the right to choose abortion. Australian Survey of Social Attitudes 2003 Australian National University Source You have done the reading. Now click here to take the test!


7 Responses to “LET’S PLAY “SPOT THE ISSUE” SHALL WE? I’M GOING TO GIVE YOU 5 PIECES OF INFORMATION AND YOU HAVE TO FIGURE OUT WHAT THE PROBLEM REALLY IS”

  1. Anonymous Helen 

    81.2% of Australians strongly agree or agree that women should have the right to choose abortion.

    That is a very heartening statistic. Apparently we're not quite so much of a mob of fundy wankers as I thought we were.

  2. Blogger Emma 

    It is. I'm so sick of seeing it represented as an even handed debate, when actually it's a 4:1 debate. Next time I see a panel interview on lateline I want to see 4 pro-choicers debate ONE nutcase.
    What does FUNDY mean? Is this a new swear word I don't know about? How exciting?

  3. Anonymous Helen 

    It's the WORST swear word there is. Short for 'religious fundamentalist'. :D

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