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  #1  
November 5th, 2006, 12:17 AM
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I saw this article on Ninemsn


Kill sickest newborns: UK Obstetricians
Sunday Nov 5 18:45 AEDT
Britain's Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecology is reportedly calling on doctors to consider euthanasing "the sickest of newborns" which it says can disable healthy families.

The Sunday Times newspaper said the proposal was in reaction to the number of such children who were surviving because of medical advances.

The college argued "active euthanasia" should be considered for the good of families, to spare parents the emotional burden and financial hardship of bringing up the sickest babies.

The proposal is contained in the college's submission to an inquiry into ethical issues raised by the policy of prolonging life in newborn babies.




Euthanasia of newborns is illegal in Britain.

"A very disabled child can mean a disabled family," the submission says.

"If life-shortening and deliberate interventions to kill infants were available, they might have an impact on obstetric decision-making, even preventing some late abortions, as some parents would be more confident about continuing a pregnancy and taking a risk on outcome.

"We would like the working party to think more radically about non-resuscitation, withdrawal of treatment decisions, the best interests test and active euthanasia as they are ways of widening the management options available to the sickest of newborns."

The newspaper reported that the college was not formally calling for active euthanasia to be introduced, but wanted the mercy killing of newborn babies to be debated by society.

In the Netherlands mercy killing was permitted for a range of incurable conditions, including severe spina bifida and the painful skin condition called epidermolysis bullosa, The Sunday Times said.

Dr Pieter Sauer, co-author of the Dutch national guidelines on euthanasia of newborns, told the paper British pediatricians were performing mercy killings and the practice should be open.

Joy Delhanty, professor of human genetics at University College London, told the paper she supported the proposal, declaring it was "morally wrong to strive to keep alive babies that are then going to suffer many months or years of ill health".

However, the British Council of Disabled People told the newspaper if euthanasia were introduced for certain conditions it would tell people with those conditions "they were worth less than other members of society".
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  #2  
November 5th, 2006, 02:17 AM
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I don't agree with euthanasias but I feel parents should be able to decide to not take life saving measurements
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  #3  
November 5th, 2006, 03:43 AM
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Quote:
I don't agree with euthanasias but I feel parents should be able to decide to not take life saving measurements[/b]
In these cases don't they already have that choice? or must they perform life saving (I think "extending" would be a better word) measurements on a child with these incurable problems?
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  #4  
November 5th, 2006, 03:54 AM
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This copy of the story is a little better written:

story

This is a tough issue but I come down firmly on the side of not allowing euthanasia for extremely disabled children. My main reason is that that child, once born, has a right to life which cannot be taken from them without due process. I see no way to determine if their suffering is worth more than their life (no way of giving them due process without some kind of extreme bias). However, if the child will never be conscious and is, say, missing a brain, I see this as a different issue (no sentience, no ability to think or feel).

I am also not sure if I agree with forcing life extending surgery...I think that must be a case by case thing decided by doctors and parents.
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  #5  
November 5th, 2006, 06:16 AM
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Very interesting question. I’m more towards the end of the continuum of NOT allowing euthanasia of sick infants. I can’t put my reasoning into words at this point because I’ve never heard of such a thing until this post and haven’t had a lot of time to think about it. I support the termination of a pregnancy of a child who will have debilitating health problems but once that baby is brought into the world, they should be given the proper medical treatment to extend their life as much as possible. And I will say this could be dissected into a “multi-layer” topic itself; whether the mother was receiving pre-natal care before the baby was born, the financial stability of the family, etc….
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  #6  
November 5th, 2006, 06:30 AM
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Quote:
This copy of the story is a little better written:

story

This is a tough issue but I come down firmly on the side of not allowing euthanasia for extremely disabled children. My main reason is that that child, once born, has a right to life which cannot be taken from them without due process. I see no way to determine if their suffering is worth more than their life (no way of giving them due process without some kind of extreme bias). However, if the child will never be conscious and is, say, missing a brain, I see this as a different issue (no sentience, no ability to think or feel).

I am also not sure if I agree with forcing life extending surgery...I think that must be a case by case thing decided by doctors and parents.[/b]
OMG OMG OMG OMG

We actually agree on something!!!!!!!!
(even though you had to post what you thought was a "better" version of the story- i will ignore that!)
So you havent stated your opinion on if the child will never be concious and the option of abortion??
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  #7  
November 5th, 2006, 06:44 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2006
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lol, I didnt mean the "better" comment towards you...the one you posted was just choppy and I had remembered reading this other one before and thought it was better written and more easily understood (and had direct quotes in full)
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  #8  
November 5th, 2006, 11:46 AM
beck12's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Location: Michigan
Posts: 12,330
I guess I am confused. I personally know a woman whose child had a condition that wasn't recognized until her daughter was 3 months old & turned blue for no apparent reason. They were able to resesitate her & got her to the hospital. There was treatment available for the condition, but it was still going to be terminal, and would only progress. I wish I knew more, but it was a very difficult time for the mom & I didn't feel comfortable to ask a lot of questions about the illness (although I know it was something with the baby's brain & prior to this there was no indication of any problem) - as it doesn't matter what her child had - what mattered was she was loosing her daughter. I do know she was able to decide to put her daughter on a DNR & she did. She didn't want her baby to have to be resistated over & over again until finally succumbing. If she could do that with a 3 month old - what would be the difference with choosing that from birth? I thought all parents had the right to have a DNR. Maybe I am misunderstanding the article or parents rights - but as far as I knew - we already have the right as parents to decide what life saving measures should be taken with an infant & which ones should not. Now I am really confused.
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  #9  
November 5th, 2006, 12:34 PM
mrobinson
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Quote:
The newspaper reported that the college was not formally calling for active euthanasia to be introduced, but wanted the mercy killing of newborn babies to be debated by society.[/b]
I think all options should be considered.
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