Premature baby feet

Doctors in a Polish hospital allegedly left a baby born alive after a botched abortion to sit unattended until it died.

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Witnesses told Republika Television that a baby born March 7 at Holy Family Hospital in Warsaw was ignored by hospital staff for one hour because medical tests indicated it had Down Syndrome, the Global Dispatch reported Tuesday. The baby, which had been developing for 24 weeks, was allegedly crying until its death.

Obstetricians say that it is theoretically possible, but doing so would be difficult for a premature infant.

Hospital employees insist they acted within the law. Spokesperson Dorota Jaslowska-Niemyska told the website a patient came in near the end of her 23rd week of pregnancy. She would answer no further questions when asked if the dignity of the child was respected upon its birth.

“It is confidential and I am not allowed to comment on the details of this procedure,” Jaslowska-Niemyska said.

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Abortion laws in Poland (a nation with over 30 million Catholics) are stringent. The procedure is illegal in most cases unless the mother’s life is in danger or the unborn child has a severe and irreversible handicap, Life Site News reported Tuesday.

Pro-life supporters in Warsaw say the child became a patient in need of medical care the moment it was born and they want hospital personnel to face criminal charges.

Bartosz Lewandowski, a lawyer from Ordo Iuris Institute, told a local television station that Poland’s Doctors Code of Ethics defines any child born as a patient who must be assisted by doctors, the Global Dispatch reported.

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