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Consider active management for premature babies born at 22 weeks, says new guidance

BMJ 2019; 367 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.l6151 (Published 23 October 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;367:l6151

Re: Consider active management for premature babies born at 22 weeks, says new guidance

Dear Sir/ Madam,

It is indeed very good news that active management should be considered for babies born at 22 weeks.

I find it though very alarming that babies in utero at that gestation can be terminated with their bodies disposed as human waste whereas a born baby at that gestation will be provided with care.

Why is a baby in utero stripped of its humanity just because it is in utero? That baby was still a baby in utero. Delivery has not made it into a person. That baby was already a person. Travelling along the birth canal is not what creates a person.

It seems that the baby in utero is dehumanised just as slaves were dehumanised by those who enslaved them, Jews dehumanised by the Nazis. These are extremely worrying antecedents. The unborn have no voices, they are the weakest and most vulnerable members of our society.

In the light of the findings of the article it also extremely disturbing that the Northern Ireland abortion limit has been set at a record high of 28 weeks contrary to the rest of Europe.

Competing interests: No competing interests

08 November 2019
Anne Pauleau
GP
London