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The Royal College of General Practitioners is, of course, fully aware that the regulation of the conditions for abortion is inevitably difficult and complex and that opinions are often difficult to reconcile.
Nevertheless, the College has been able to establish the grave concern of many of its members at the proposals outlined in this Bill. The College has not received one single letter in support of the Abortion (Amendment) Bill.
The College notes that the Lane Committee (1974) carried out a very full and detailed review of the working of the Abortion Act and published its view only last year. The College notes that the Lane Committee took evidence from those with every shade of opinion, examined in detail virtually every published scientific report on abortion in this country, and, furthermore, commissioned and published specific evidence about the working of the 1967 Abortion Act.
The College notes that the Lane Committee contained members, in addition to general practitioners, who were lawyers, administrative medical officers, psychiatrists, gynaecologists, social workers, and women representing the public, and that its work took about three years to carry out.
The Royal College of General Practitioners endorses the work of the Lane Committee and therefore recommends that the recommendations of that Committee should be implemented instead of the proposals in the Abortion (Amendment) Bill.