Pro-choice doctors say they are carrying out 800-900 abortions per month

The number of abortions taking place in Ireland in the first year of the new regime is due to hit 10,000 if estimates by doctors facilitating the procedure are accurate. That would be a huge increase on the estimated 5,000 Irish women undergoing abortions in previous years, adding together the number of women who travelled to England annually or were thought to be using the abortion pill illegally.

There are no publicly-available, official figures as to how many abortions have taken place in Ireland since January but estimates have been provided by START, an activist group of doctors who were formed to campaign for repeal of the 8th amendment. Their 250 members are involved in providing abortions under the new law and they estimate they are carrying out 800-900 terminations a month. This would add up to a figure of over 10,000 for the whole year.

At the same time, women are still travelling to the UK for abortions in significant numbers. One British network of abortion clinics says the number of women with Irish addresses accessing abortion at its clinics between January and March was 64 this year, compared to 257 last year, which is still 25% of the previous demand.