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May 5, 1993

Parental Consent for Abortion-Reply

Author Affiliations

American Medical Association Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs Chicago, Ill

JAMA. 1993;269(17):2211. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03500170040020

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In Reply.  —In our Council Report on abortion for minors, the Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs concluded that physicians should strongly encourage minors to discuss their pregnancy with their parents. The report emphasizes the value of parental involvement and instructs physicians to ensure that a minor's reluctance to involve her parents is not based on any misperceptions about the likely consequences of parental involvement. The report does not exclude parents nor does it discourage parental involvement.The report recognizes that, in some cases, parental involvement may be harmful. For example, the minor may live in an abusive home, and disclosure of her pregnancy might result in further abuse. In addition, like adults, adolescents need privacy in matters of personal intimacy. Because of the risk of harm to the minor and the minor's need for privacy, the report concluded that minors should not be forced to involve their parents.Nevertheless,