It was feeling as though there were some in the world getting the message. A life with Down syndrome is a life worth living. I’ve watched as the statistics began a slow decent into lower percentages. Where it was once reported that 90% of all prediagnosed fetuses with Down syndrome were aborted, now the reports are coming in saying as low as 82% of all fetuses prediagnosed with an extra chromosome were being aborted. A statistic still way too high, but that potential 8% difference could mean that thousands of babies were being given the chance at life. Then I came across this article via the Sunday Times where it has been discovered in the UK that hundreds, almost half, of the women aborting babies because of Down syndrome were not being recorded on the official records.
The investigation, published on the Department of Health website, shows that in 2012 a total of 994 babies were aborted for Down’s Syndrome, according to the independent National Down’s Syndrome Cytogenetic Register.
However, Department of Health figures recorded just 496 of these – meaning that 498 cases were classed as missing.
They lost 498 dead babies? The article states that it was just too much work for the doctor to tick off a box and find an envelope and stamp and send the information to the Chief Medical Officer within 14 days.
Because, frankly, who has the strength to lick a stamp after sucking the pieces of a perfectly viable pregnancy out of a woman’s uterus simply because of an extra chromosome.
How could any life be so under valued that even reporting it’s annihilation is unaffectedly too much effort?
The records for 2011 show 410 women aborting babies with Down syndrome when in fact there were 937 terminations.
To add insult to injury, under the Abortion Act, termination of a baby with Down syndrome is legal right up to the point of birth. Right up to the point of birth. So, in theory, you could go in to labor, decide that a baby with Down syndrome is not what you were dreaming of after all and then decide on an abortion.
If this is happening in the UK, what other countries is it happening in? How many other potential lives with Down syndrome haven’t been worth the effort to report?
With more early, non-invasive testing options available to mothers today, most of the cases of Down syndrome in utero are being diagnosed. Parker and I put our lives out here in the open in order to show the beauty and great potential found within an extra chromosome……even when that extra chromosome comes with so many other health issues that most kids with Down syndrome don’t have to deal with.
If I could go back almost 10 years, knowing everything I know now, and then being given the chance to do it all again, I would.
In. A. Heartbeat.