Cape Town ‘anti-abortion doctor’ pleads not guilty to charges
A doctor at 2 Military Hospital in Wynberg, Cape Town has pleaded not guilty to two charges at a Health Professions Council of SA disciplinary hearing. Jacques De Vos is accused of trying to dissuade a patient from terminating her pregnancy in December 2016 and of failing to respect the patient’s autonomy.
Jacques De Vos, a doctor who has been accused of trying to dissuade a patient from terminating her pregnancy, pleaded not guilty to the charges brought against him at his disciplinary hearing on Monday, 9 December.
In the plea on Monday, De Vos’s counsel argued before a hearing of the Health Professions Council of SA (HPCSA) that the doctor was acting in the best interests of both the mother and the baby “by trying to save the life of a healthy unborn child”.
The committee heard how De Vos, who was present at the hearing, was “trying to prevent the mother from authorising Dr Archary or any other doctor to kill her unborn child given the risk of physical and/or psychological effects such acts would have on her”, his attorney, Keith Matthee, argued.
When hearings began two months ago in Cape Town, De Vos’s defence had argued that four charges against him should be dismissed because the delay had prejudiced his client. The committee decided that the first two charges would remain.