UK politicians call for action against sex-selective abortion

Catholic News Agency | 9/18/2018 | Staff
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London, England, Sep 18, 2018 / 02:30 pm (CNA).- British politicians have called for a review of the availability of early sex detection tests for pregnant women. The proposal was made by Labour Members of Parliament and prompted by concerns that the tests are leading to sex-selective abortions.

The MP’s expressed particular concern that women, especially those in the UK’s Asian communities, are being pressured or coerced into having an abortion if they are pregnant with a girl.

Labour - MP - Naz - Shah - Women

Labour MP Naz Shah said it was “morally wrong” that women are using the Non-Invasive Prenatal Test (NIPT) to determine whether or not they are pregnant with a girl, and then scheduling an abortion based on the result. Shah, the Shadow Secretary of State for Women and Equalities, called for a government investigation into the practice.

The call for government intervention against the practice comes almost 18 months after the Nuffield Council on Bioethics, a government-funded think tank, found that NIPT promoted sex-selective abortions.

NIPT - Blood - Test - Mother - Week

The NIPT consists of a blood test given to the mother at the ninth week of pregnancy, at which time the baby’s DNA is detectable in their mother’s bloodstream.

The test is currently administered by the UK’s National Health Service to screen for genetic conditions, such as Down syndrome. Pro-life advocates have already warned that the test is used to “screen out” children with Down’s syndrome and other conditions. Currently in the UK, 90% of children with a prenatal diagnosis of Down’s syndrome are aborted.

Gender - NIPT - NHS - Share - Information

While the gender can be detected by the NIPT, the NHS does not share this information with parents unless there is a specific need to do so. While the test is not made available by the NHS expressly for gender screening, it is privately available to parents and can be purchased at a clinic for about £150-£200.

In the London...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Catholic News Agency
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