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Govt. review confirms babies are being born alive after abortion in Ireland

by | Apr 28, 2023

By Niamh UI Bhriain, Life Institute

The government’s review of the operation of the 2018 abortion law has found that babies are being born alive after abortion – and may be denied even comfort care after the procedure failed to end their lives.

Discussing palliative care – where comfort care is needed for babies born alive after a late-term abortion – the review coldly notes that some paediatricians and neonatologists do not want to be involved in assisting these babies.

“However, the extent to which they are prepared to become involved is described as differing across settings and differing across the circumstances of the birth, with some not being prepared to offer comfort care where the birth is a result of a termination of pregnancy,” the review, authored by barrister Marie O’Shea, notes.

In 2020, this platform reported on a shocking paper published in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology by researchers at UCC [University College Cork] – who supported abortion, but who had gathered the experiences of those performing abortions in Ireland.

As we revealed:

In the UCC study, the authors note that the specialists carrying out abortion were frustrated by conflict with neonatologists and were “unclear” as to who will look after those babies’ if a baby was “born alive following an abortion by induction of labour and without feticide”.

This would leave the doctor who performed an unsuccessful late-term abortion “begging people to help” them provide palliative care if the baby survived, the study recorded.

The scenario is simply horrifying. Only the hardest of hearts, the cruellest of policymakers, would not find this deeply, deeply disturbing. A child, born alive after an abortion, likely struggling to breathe, left without care, with doctors – those who are meant to save lives – hoping they will die.

Some of the doctors quoted in the study seemed utterly inhumane. “None of us want to be in a situation where we thought, ah sure deliver and then the baby is alive six weeks later and there’s all the issues that go with that,” one is recorded as saying.

Their attitude to children with ‘non-fatal’ disabilities is also revealing – and explains the real rationale behind the push to extend the law to ensure babies with such conditions can be aborted in addition to those unborn children diagnosed with life-limiting conditions.

According to the study’s authors:

The legislation as it exists is “difficult” and “restrictive” because sometimes babies are diagnosed with a condition where they might live longer than the 28 days referenced in the legislation.

They coldly describe these babies as ‘not clearly fatal but clearly awful’.

“Non-fatal is a whole different ball game. You have got a baby with life limiting, with a poor quality of life which may limit the duration but it is certainly going to have an impact on the parents and the other children in the family and the rest of their lives,” one abortion doctor is quoted as saying.

Others found carrying out late-term abortions difficult.

The study shows that Irish doctors are deeply divided on provision of late-term abortion, and that even those carrying out the procedure saw it as ‘brutal’, ‘awful’ and ‘emotionally difficult’ – referring to it as ‘stabbing the baby in the heart’.

“I remember getting sick out in the corridors afterwards because I thought it (feticide) was such an awful procedure and so dreadful,” one doctor is quoted as saying.

The rest of the media – and many politicians – denied all knowledge of this paper, published in a peer-reviewed journal, and the horrors that it, perhaps unwittingly, exposed.

But now the government’s own review has confirmed that babies are surviving abortions and may be left without even comfort care. What a heartbreaking, shameful indictment of Ireland and her people.

The recommendations of the Abortion Review, which was shaped by carefully selected abortion supporters, come as no surprise in that they repeatedly push for measures which would increase Ireland’s already rocketing abortion rate.

But we should be shocked that a government review can note that babies are being born alive after abortion in Ireland and left to die without even comfort care – and then go demand an even more liberal abortion law.

We have lost our humanity. Our culture is utterly broken. Those of us who still understand that real compassion doesn’t involve killing are now tasked with rebuilding it.

(For more on what is involved in feticide, as mentioned above, see here.)

Editor’s note. This appeared on the blog of Life Institute and is reposted with permission.

Categories: Born-Alive Infants