Women in Thailand who are no more than 20 weeks pregnant can now legally seek an abortion with prior consultation from a doctor, to be performed by a licensed medical professional.
Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health set the directive and published it in the Royal Gazette on September 26th, 2022.
Dr. Traisuree Traisoranakul, Deputy Government Spokesperson, said that the directive outlines the protocol that a pregnant woman seeking an abortion must follow.
A pregnant woman must contact a licensed medical centre approved by the Department of Health Services, inform officials of her desires, and obtain consultation and counselling.
Furthermore, the notification to seek consultations can be done in person, in writing, via phone, or through other electronic channels, following which medical personnel would check her pregnancy to see if it fulfills the standards.
If a woman less than 12 weeks pregnant chooses to have an abortion, her doctor will conduct the procedure as needed.
If the patient is more than 20 weeks pregnant, her medical professional will take steps to ensure that the mother receives enough care during her pregnancy and while raising the child. The doctor will also provide information on adoption in Thailand.
Dr. Traisuree went on to clarify that the directive states that women seeking abortions must be treated respectfully, without being stigmatized for their decision to have an abortion or for the behaviour that resulted in the pregnancy.
Women must receive basic medical information about abortion, so they are neither influenced nor forced to make decisions against their will.
Most crucially, the entire procedure must be kept private.
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