Abortion in Hungary
Abortion in Hungary was subject to legal liberalization as early as 1953. The abortion law was changed three times since then, in 1956, 1973, and 1992. As a result of that Hungary has a liberal abortion law. While women must get the approval of a committee before having an abortion, a number of various hypothetical situations have been placed into the law allowing an abortion, so the request has become a mere formality.
Hungary is influenced by Roman Catholicism, and, although abortion is legal, it is not easy to access: women must go through a specific procedure involving counseling, a waiting period, and a certificate from a midwife in order to obtain an abortion.
Abortion is regulated under the Law on the Protection of the Foetus, 1992. Under this law, an abortion is normally allowed until 12 weeks. However, in certain circumstances the limit can be extended to 18, 20 or 24 weeks. A pregnancy may be terminated at any time if the fetus is lethally afflicted (ie. anencephaly). There is mandatory counseling and a 3 days waiting period.
In 1998, the country's highest court demanded that a definition be supplied for the term "grave crisis situation", as there were concerns that women undergoing the procedure may not actually be in "crisis", and if they were, that they get psychiatric help after their abortion. On June 29, 2000, the Ministry of Health defined a "grave crisis situation" as "when it causes bodily or mental impairment, or a socially intolerable situation".
The Hungarian Government organized a pro-life campaign in 2011 where posters were shown with an image of a baby in the womb, with the caption saying, “I understand that you are not yet ready for me, but give me up to the adoption agency, LET ME LIVE!” The Government has been sharply criticised for using European Union funds on the campaign. An EU Commissioner Viviane Reding said that the campaign “goes against European values.”
Between 2010 and 2015 the number of reported abortions per year dropped by 22.9 per cent, which was attributed to the introduction of pro-family measures by the Hungarian Government. Adoption is promoted by the state where women do not want to keep their baby. There are also educational classes and aid to families.
|Year||Number of reported abortions||Induced abortion ratio per 100 live birth|
- Hungary - ABORTION POLICY - United Nations
- Központi Statisztikai Hivatal (Hungarian Central Statistical Office): Demográfiai évkönyv 2005 (Demographic Yearbook 2005). KSH, Budapest, 2006. (ISSN 0237-7594)
- New York Times: Hungarian Parliament Approves Relatively Liberal Abortion Law
- EURACTIV - EU funds used for Hungarian anti-abortion campaign
- Thorpe, Nick (18 April 2011). "Hungary: Parliament votes for new constitution". BBC News Online.
- The Christian Institute - Government pro-life actions lead to drop in abortions in Hungary
- Origo.hu - Sokkal kevesebb az abortusz Magyarországon
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