Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Hey! That's my kid!...

Per the L. A. Times (free registration required) - Woman Awarded $1 Million Over Embryo Mix-Up: The doctor hid his error, her lawyer says. Couple want custody of her son.
SAN FRANCISCO — A Bay Area woman has been awarded $1 million in damages to settle a malpractice lawsuit against a fertility specialist who accidentally implanted her with the wrong embryos and then hid the mistake until the baby she delivered was 10 months old, according to her lawyer. The embryos Susan Buchweitz received at a San Francisco clinic were actually intended for a married couple who had in vitro fertilization the same day using the husband's sperm and a different egg donor. The couple are seeking custody of the 3-year-old boy whom Buchweitz has raised since birth.
Oh, the conundrums we enter into when we do things simply because we can. From the Touchstone article, The Unchosen Frozen, (see here), we read:
...When IVF became available, the American public not only embraced the practice, but also began, I believe, to lose respect for human life. IVF taught Americans (however unconsciously) to view children as products—and disposable products in fact...
From the L. A. Times article,
Court papers allege that both Steven L. Katz, the fertility doctor, and Imam El-Danasouri, the scientist who incubated the embryos and allegedly provided the wrong ones, knew of the mix-up within minutes of Buchweitz's in vitro procedure June 15, 2000, at the Fertility Associates of the Bay Area clinic. But they concluded that it would be better to let nature take its course rather than provide their patient with the truth — and the choice of whether to terminate the pregnancy, Hersh said.
Now... shouldn't the good scientist and doctor have notified the couple to whom the embryo belonged, in order to give them the choice of whether to tell Buchweitz to terminate the life of their child (that she just happened to be carrying)?

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