Survey: 89% of neonatal medics accept abortion AFTER birth

By WND Staff

Nearly 90% of neonatal care medics in northern Belgium are willing to commit infanticide, according to a study.

Kim Beernaert of Research Foundation Flanders surveyed doctors and paramedics in the Flanders region of Belgium and found 89.1% thought it “acceptable” to end the life of a baby born with a “serious” disability, even if the condition was not life-threatening.

The researchers found little change in attitude to “after-birth abortion” when there was “an unclear diagnosis and unpredictable prognosis,” noted the U.K.’s Christian Institute.

The health care professionals had “a high degree of tolerance” toward late abortions, with 95.6% of respondents open to the practice if an unborn baby’s disability was deemed “serious but not lethal.”

Belgium has the world’s most liberal law on physician-assisted suicide, allowing it for psychiatric conditions and children as well as for the terminally ill.

Right to Life UK noted the number of medics in the study who “agree that in the event of a serious (non-lethal) neonatal condition, administering drugs with the explicit intention to end neonatal life is acceptable.”

RTL said, “While the term ‘serious (non-lethal) neonatal condition’ is not defined in the paper, similarly unrestrictive wording in the UK Abortion Act has in practice allowed for abortion right up to birth for babies prenatally diagnosed with a disability – including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot.”

RTL recalled that in 2012, medical ethicists Francesca Minerva and Alberto Guibilini “controversially claimed that doctors should be allowed to end the lives of disabled, and even unwanted, newborn babies because they are not ‘actual persons.'”

The two published an article in the British Medical Journal arguing parents should be allowed to end the lives of their newborns shortly after birth because they are “morally irrelevant” and have “no moral right to life.”

They contended unborn babies and newborns are only “potential persons.”

RTL said: “The response to the article was widespread outrage and even death threats aimed at the articles two authors. However, what was widely condemned, at the time, now appears to have widespread support among healthcare professionals surveyed in Belgium.”

RTL spokeswoman Catherine Robinson noted that less than 10 years ago, “there was a strong condemnation of the idea of ending a baby’s life after it had been born, regardless of whether or not it had a disability, when this idea was floated by academics in the British Medical Journal.”

“Tragically, the thought of intentionally ending the life of an unborn baby and newborn baby now appears to have gone from an outlandish academic thought experiment to be seen as something that is morally acceptable by these healthcare professionals in Belgium.”

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