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Norway: anti-abortion doctor wins appeal against city of Sauherad. She’ll have to be taken back as a GP

An anti-abortion doctor, Katarzyna Jachimowicz, won her appeal against the city of Sauherad, so she’ll have to be taken back as a general practitioner. This puts an end to the story of Katarzyna Jachimowicz, a Polish Catholic GP who has been in Norway since 2010 and who was fired in December 2015 for not giving up on her conscientious objection to the insertion of IUD, a contraceptive method that can result in abortion. The court of Sauherad, where the doctor worked, had granted the claim of the municipal health authority that had fired her, considering Jachimowicz’s choice to be “discriminating” and based on the national law that has been in force since 2014 and “forces general practitioners to insert IUDs into their patients themselves”. Now, Agder’s Court of Appeal has overturned such ruling, because “a general practitioner who has conscientious objections to something cannot lose his or her job just because he or she has reservations about the IUD, unless the Municipality can prove that such objection would totally impair the patient’s chance to have an IUD inserted at all”. “I am glad about the conclusions of the Court: this ruling is a win for conscientious objection”, the bishop of Oslo, mgr. Bernt Eidsvig, stated. The doctor’s position has always been that such Norwegian law clashes with the provisions of the European Convention on Human Rights.

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