n South African Medical Journal - Termination of pregnancy and children : consent and confidentiality issues : medicine and the law : forum

Volume 100, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



While the Choice on Termination of Pregnancy Act (Choice Act) allows a female of any age to consent to a termination of pregnancy, there are other statutes, such as the Child Care Act and the Children's Act, that provide for different ages of consent for medical and surgical procedures. Doctors are not always certain whether young girls are legally capable of giving proper informed consent for certain associated procedures when undergoing a termination of pregnancy. Furthermore, the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act (the Sexual Offences Act), which imposes a duty to report sexual offences against children, seems to undermine the girl-child patient's right to confidentiality.

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