Ireland’s strict anti-abortion law which got Savits’ life is based on Catholic beliefs and laws. Abortion in the Republic of Ireland is illegal unless it occurs as the result of a medical intervention performed to save the life of the mother. However the availability of abortion services can be even more restricted in the absence of a readily available method of determining the circumstances in which an abortion might be lawfully obtained.
Abortion is a controversial issue in Irish politics and five national referendums have been held on the topic in the last 30 years. Earlier this year, the government set up an expert group to make recommendations in response to a judgment of the European Court of Human Rights judgment that Ireland had failed to implement existing rights to lawful abortion where a mother’s life was at risk.
Left-wing MPs Clare Daly and Joan Collins, who had introduced a bill in Parliament earlier this year to allow an abortion in specific life-threatening circumstances, said that had their proposals been accepted, Savita would have been alive.
“A woman has died because Galway University Hospital refused to perform an abortion needed to prevent serious risk to her life. “This is a situation we were told would never arise. An unviable foetus — the woman was having a miscarriage — was given priority over the woman’s life, who unfortunately and predictably developed septicaemia and died,” Ms Daly said.
The Roman Catholic Church opposes all forms of abortion procedures whose direct purpose is to destroy an embryo, blastocyst, zygote or fetus, since it holds that "human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person - among which are the inviolable right of every innocent being to life."
Since the Catholic Church terms abortion as immoral, it considers it a duty to reduce its acceptance by the public and in civil legislation.