Legal Change on Contraceptive Sterilization
Journal of Legal History, Vol. 32, No. 3, pp. 291-313, 2011
29 Pages Posted: 6 Feb 2012
Date Written: September 1, 2010
New and controversial medical procedures such as contraceptive sterilization are often thought, at least initially, to be prohibited by the criminal law. This article examines how — without any formal legal intervention — contraceptive sterilization for a consenting patient eventually became accepted as lawful in the United Kingdom. A prominent role was played by the medical profession, its organizations and its journals. A significant role was played by a little-known campaigning organization in ensuring this legal change.
Keywords: medical law, criminal law, contraceptive sterilisation, contraceptive sterilization, legal change, informal legal change, medical exception
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