Monday, September 11, 2006

Woman Loses "Wrongful Birth" Suit

From The Scotsman (UK):
A young mother who lost a groundbreaking battle for £250,000 compensation after giving birth to an "aborted" twin daughter yesterday vowed to appeal against the decision.

Stacy Dow launched the action - the first of its kind in Britain - earlier this year, convinced she had not been given proper warning by NHS medics that termination operations do not always guarantee success.

But following a court's decision to reject the action, Miss Dow, 21, of Perth, said she was determined to fight on.

[…] The single mother decided to take the case to court, hoping to force the hospital to pay for the upbringing of her child.

Five years ago, at the age of 16, Miss Dow discovered she was pregnant. After much soul-searching and fearing she could not cope with premature motherhood, she went to Perth Royal Infirmary for an abortion.

But seven weeks from term, she was told that one of the foetuses had survived the abortion and in August 2001 she gave birth to a baby daughter, Jayde.

[…] "Jayde started school two weeks ago and is enjoying it. I still want to do the best for her, but it's exhausting dealing with the legal side."

The poor child! What are they going to tell her as she grows up? “Mommy, please tell me the story of how you tried to kill me, then tried to get the government to pay for me. Don’t leave out the part where my sister wound up incinerated as medical waste.” I realize the young mother was only 16 at the time, and Lord only knows what passes for thought in the head of a 16-year-old these days, so I suspect there was many an adult complicit in this sordid and tragic affair.

It is numbing how we talk around all this as if it were a problem for accountants and attorneys. May God have mercy on us all; there are very few of us who haven't sinned in this debate, whether by commission or omission. I know there was a time in my life many years ago when I thought abortion was no big deal; now the consequences of that flawed belief are too obvious to ignore.

By the way, the story continues, describing the reason Miss Dow’s claim for compensation was denied:

[…] NHS trust advocate David Stephenson added: "NHS patients don't contract with health trusts or health boards for medical treatment. There's no contractual relationship between the NHS patient and the NHS service provider."

Take a few minutes, sit back, and ponder the full implications of that last sentence, all you supporters of government-managed health care.