Changes to voluntary sterilization act

SINGAPORE - The Voluntary Sterilization Act (VSA) was amended in Parliament yesterday to give more protection to people with disabilities.

Under the amended Act, the consent of a disabled person who has the mental capacity to make decisions for himself or herself will be needed for a sexual-sterilisation procedure.

Before this, the spouse, parent or guardian of such people had the power to give consent on their behalf.

For those who lack the mental capacity, a court order will be required should a spouse, parent or guardian decide that the procedure is needed, under the amended Act.

These changes will bring Singapore in line with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, said Minister for Health Gan Kim Yong.

With the changes, the VSA will now be aligned to the Mental Capacity Act.

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