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Marie Stopes halts surgical abortions over untrained staff

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The United Kingdom abortion provider Marie Stopes has suspended surgical abortions using anesthetics or sedation at its facilities for minors and “vulnerable groups of women,” after a surprise Care Quality Commission inspection concluded staff was not sufficiently trained to administer them safely.

“At all times, our priority is to ensure that patients get safe, high-quality and compassionate care. We believe that the action taken is appropriate to address our concerns,” CQC Deputy Chief Inspector of Hospitals Edward Baker said. “We will continue to monitor these services very closely and we will not hesitate to take further action, if needed.”

Inspectors will not give Marie Stopes permission to resume abortions until they are satisfied that their staff are fully qualified to do so. Prescheduled abortions at Marie Stopes locations are being referred to other providers.

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In addition, government inspectors conducted an unannounced inspection of Marie Stopes International’s corporate headquarters in June, as well as their call center last month.

“We will report fully and publicly on our inspection findings as soon as our regulatory process has concluded and we are able to do so,” Baker said.

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