As abortion access comes under threat in the United States, much discussion is necessarily about rights and choice. It’s important not to lose sight of abortion as a vital component health care. This is especially crucial for women and families with genetic risks.

Today in The Conversation Canada, Neal Sondheimer of the University of Toronto discusses the harsh realities of inherited diseases, which often mean a couple has one in four odds of a fetus being affected by a serious or fatal genetic condition. In such cases, Sondheimer notes that abortion provides a safe option when the alternatives are devastating, paradoxically making pregnancy possible for people with high risks.

“More consideration needs to be given to women and their partners who have a need for abortion due to serious fetal problems that will lead to early death or profound disability in their children,” he writes. “Abortion is a critical option, a security feature that allows them to consider having children again.”

Also today:

All the best.

Patricia Nicholson

Health + Medicine Editor

Incidence of birth defects is about one in 25 pregnancies. (Shutterstock)

Abortion and inherited disease: Genetic disorders complicate the view that abortion is a choice

Neal Sondheimer, University of Toronto

For women with a family history of serious genetic disorders, abortion is a critical option: a security feature that allows them to consider having children.

New twists and turns, as Elon Musk raises concerns about Twitter before the purchase deal is complete. (Patrick Pleul/Pool via AP, File)

Is Elon Musk getting cold feet? Why the entrepreneur may be trying to pull out of buying Twitter

Anup Srivastava, University of Calgary

Elon Musk’s recent antics call into question his decision to purchase Twitter. With a US$1 billion termination fee built into the contract, Musk should cut his losses.

An Indian woman sorts reusable items from a landfill on the outskirts of New Delhi in March 2021. Trash pickers sometimes toil alongside paid municipal sanitation workers and provide a vital service to cities. Their subsistence work is put at risk by smart city technologies. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

Smart city technologies pose serious threats to women waste workers in India

Josie Wittmer, Queen's University, Ontario

‘Smart’ solutions to urban solid waste are creating serious challenges for low-income women waste workers in India.

People often underestimate the risks of swimming in the Great Lakes, and neglect rough surf and nearshore currents. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Summer ‘revenge travel’ could raise drowning risk at beaches, but new tech might help

Chris Houser, University of Windsor; Alex Smith, University of Windsor

Rough surf and nearshore currents lead to about 50 drowning fatalities annually in the Great Lakes.

Amber Heard and Johnny Depp appear in the courtroom at the Fairfax County Circuit Court on May 5, 2022. (Jim Lo Scalzo/AP)

The Johnny Depp-Amber Heard defamation trial shows the dangers of fan culture

Maddie Brockbank, McMaster University

What appears to be normal social media activity exposes a much darker reality: fan culture often leads to deeply harmful conversations shaping how people address and redress violence.

Hospital design shifted in the 20th century as hospitals moved from being places for treating disease and injury to being centres of health systems. (Shutterstock)

How psychological aspects of healing are important for hospital design

Mohsen Rasoulivalajoozi, Concordia University; Golriz Farzamfar, Concordia University

The theory of supportive design considers positive distraction, perceptions of control and social support.

La Conversation Canada

Des abeilles ouvrières sur un cadre de ruche. (Leslie Kennah)

Les vagues de chaleur extrême menacent la fertilité des abeilles et provoquent leur mort subite

Alison McAfee, University of British Columbia

Des apiculteurs de la Colombie-Britannique ont signalé la mort d'abeilles domestiques pendant le dôme de chaleur de 2021. D'autres insectes peuvent également être en danger.

Des gens font la queue devant une épicerie de Montréal-Nord, le 30 avril 2020. Le quartier, l’un des plus pauvres au pays, a été l’un des plus affectés par l’épidémie de Covid-19. La Presse Canadienne/Paul Chiasson

La réponse à la pandémie, une occasion manquée de s’attaquer aux inégalités au Québec et dans le monde

Marie-Catherine Gagnon-Dufresne, Université de Montréal; Camille Beaujoin, Université de Montréal; Fanny Chabrol, Institut de recherche pour le développement (IRD); Lara Gautier, Université de Montréal; Stéphanie Gomes de Medeiros, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco; Valery Ridde, Institut de recherche pour le développement (IRD); Zoé Richard, Université Paris Cité

Que ce soit au Québec, en France, au Mali ou au Brésil, la réponse à la pandémie de Covid-19 apparaît comme une opportunité manquée de lutter contre les inégalités et les injustices.

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