This document answers six questions about Dutch policy on abortion.
Abortus provocatus (abortion) is the medical expression for the deliberate termination of pregnancy at or prior to 24 weeks. It is listed as an offence in the Dutch Criminal Code, but the doctor performing the procedure will not be prosecuted if the clinic or the hospital has a licence to perform abortions. The doctor performing the abortion must also ascertain that the woman can explain why her pregnancy has put her in an emergency situation. It was a deliberate decision not to include criteria relating to this situation in the Termination of Pregnancy Act.
The treatment can take place up until the 24th week of pregnancy, after which the fetus becomes viable outside the womb. In the Netherlands, 17 abortion clinics and 92 hospitals are licensed to perform abortions.