Photo: Montse PB / flickr
In an effort to prevent couples from selectively aborting unborn children based on gender, the Council of Europe has passed a draft resolution that would prevent parents from being told the sex of the foetus.According to the Daily Telegraph, this method of “choosing” the sex of a child has reached “worrying” proportions in some European states, but the resolution, if passed, would be recommended to all of the 47 member states. The Daily Telegraph goes on to report:
“. . . all NHS midwives and doctors could be blocked from telling expectant parents whether they will have a boy or a girl.
Parenting groups last night expressed anger about the proposed change, while doctors said the proposals were unworkable.
Justine Roberts, founder of parenting site Mumsnet said expectant couples would feel “pretty angry and disappointed” if a blanket ban on gender identification is introduced.
Mrs Roberts said expectant parents asked to know the sex of their child on practical grounds, such as working out whether siblings could share a room, or simply because they wanted an idea of what lay ahead.
She said: “I can understand that there may be problems in some parts of the world with sex selection, but it seems ridiculous to apply the thinking to countries where this has not been shown to be a problem.”
Fox News has more from its senior managing editor of FoxNewsHealth.com, Dr. Manny Alvarez:
“There are parents that specifically want an ultrasound to determine the sex so they can consider sex selection,” he said. “(But) the consensus of withholding information from a parent falls against the grain of a relationship between a doctor and a patient. It violates ethics.”
Alvarez said the practice could never be done in America, as any documented medical data done on a patient immediately becomes the patient’s property.
The Daily Mail reports that the Council of Europe cannot force its member states’ governments to take this recommendation, even if it’s passed. Although, it notes that the council’s recommendations are “frequently enacted as a result of conventions and treaties.”
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