Belfast Telegraph

Monday 21 April 2014

An anencephalic baby is not a 'dead body'

I FOUND your article, 'Her baby had no brain... but the law forced her to carry it' (News, October 10) distressing in the extreme, due to the inaccurate information contained in it.

It may interest you to know that I gave birth to my anencephalic daughter, Megan, 27 years ago, whom I carried to almost full term in the hope of donating her organs.

This was a major story at the time, carried by the national and international press.

I also appeared on several programmes to highlight the issue of organ donation.

Obviously, Facebook did not exist then. My research was done in public libraries. I also took part in trials to establish the effectiveness of preventative medication (folic acid).

I have to question what a gender scan is. Megan's condition was picked up by a regular scan at the RVH.

That labour would be described as "very, very traumatic", perhaps lasting several days, is nonsense.

The care and consideration I received from my doctor was exceptional.

While the transplant did not go ahead, I held my daughter in my arms and said goodbye to her. I also allowed the hospital to do a post-mortem examination in the hope of learning more about this condition.

While not wanting to denigrate Sarah Ewart's feelings, to say "this is a dead body that I'm carrying" is wrong.

KATE McKEATING

By email

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