Crisis Pregnancy in Ireland

Crisis Pregnancy in Ireland

Crisis Pregnancy

There are a wide variety of reasons which will impel a woman to define her pregnancy as a crisis pregnancy, and to consider terminating that pregnancy.

In some cases, she will have experienced contraceptive failure.  In other cases, she and her partner may not have planned to have sex, and will not have used contraception.  In other cases, a pregnancy may become a crisis due to the diagnosis of a serious foetal abnormality, or due to other changes in the woman’s personal, family or health circumstances, or relationship issues.

Crisis pregnancy counselling in Well Woman is delivered within the parameters of the 1995 Information Act (the Regulation of Information (Services Outside the State for Termination of Pregnancies) Act, 1995).

This means that a Well Woman Counsellor will discuss a woman’s 3 options – abortion, adoption and parenting – in a counselling session.  Our approach is client-centred, with the counsellor’s role being to listen, support and challenge the woman.  If requested, we will give information on abortion service providers outside the State.

Partners, close friends or family members are welcome to attend along with women coming for crisis pregnancy counselling, and all women are encouraged to return for follow-up session/s, if needed.

Reproductive Rights in Ireland

All women have the right within the Irish Constitution to receive information on abortion.  They also have the right to travel outside this State to access abortion services legally available in other jurisdictions.

To support these rights, crisis pregnancy counselling is available, free of charge, in Well Woman’s three Dublin clinics.  All our counsellors are fully-qualified professional counsellors, with many years of experience in the therapeutic field, and all are accredited by the Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy.

Abortion is not available in Ireland, except in cases where there is ‘a real and substantial’ risk to the life of the woman, including the risk of suicide.  The risk to her life does not have to be immediate or imminent.  Accessing abortion services in these circumstances can be complex.

A pregnant woman’s health, or the long-term quality of her life, is not considered to be grounds for legal abortion.

This note aims to offer broad guidance to women on crisis pregnancy, and on what happens when a pregnancy represents a risk to her life, reflecting the Protection of Life during Pregnancy Act, 2013.

The Protection of Life during Pregnancy Act and the Dublin Well Woman Centre:

Where there is an immediate risk to a woman’s life

Where there is a risk to a woman’s life that it neither immediate nor imminent

Where the risk to a woman’s life is linked to suicidal ideation or intent

How does a pregnant woman establish that she is entitled to a legal abortion?

The decision-making process


Recording of Information