Back in February, we sought your views on the possibility of registering pregnancy losses that happen before 24 weeks’ gestation. Here is a bit of a reminder and an update.
In July lst year, Tim Loughton MP presented a Private Member’s Bill – the Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration Etc.) Bill 2017-19 – to the Westminster Parliament. This Bill includes a request to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to consider the law on registering pregnancy losses that happen before 24 weeks’ gestation. The Bill passed its second reading on 2 February 2018.
Alongside this, the Secretary of State has commissioned a Pregnancy Loss Review focused on care and support when pregnancy loss occurs before 24 weeks’ gestation. The Miscarriage Association’s Director, Ruth Bender Atik, is a member of the Review’s Advisory Panel.
Both the Bill and the Review focus on whether the law ought to be changed either to allow the registration of pre-24 week pregnancy losses (so that this is a personal choice) or to require it (so it is a legal requirement).
Consulting our stakeholders
The Miscarriage Association carried out an online survey of members, supporters and social media followers between 21 February and 5 March 2018, seeking views on the proposals in the Bill.
We sought views from those who had personal experience of miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy or molar pregnancy on whether the law ought to be changed either to allow the registration of pre-24 week pregnancy losses or to require it, in order to inform the review, discussion and decision-making process.
Our sincere thanks to all of those who responded.
Top line results
- There were 2,586 respondents, 93% of whom said that they had experienced pregnancy loss themselves.
- The overwhelming majority, 74%, were in favour of permitting registration of pre-24 week loss (miscarriage, ectopic or molar pregnancy) at any gestation.
- 23% felt this should be an option only from a certain gestation and those cut-off points varied widely.
- In summary, there was is overwhelming majority support for the expansion of optional registration for pre-24 week pregnancy losses.
We’ll be sharing the top line results with those involved in the Bill and the Review, as well as drawing on them to decide the Miscarriage Association’s position.
With our stakeholders’ views at the forefront of our minds, the Miscarriage Association’s Board and senior staff are now in the process of finalising the charity’s position statement. We look forward to sharing it with you.