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|Title: ||When a mother's rights clash with the needs of her unborn child.|
|Authors: ||Callaghan, Sascha|
|Issue Date: ||9-Apr-2015|
|Publisher: ||Fairfax Media|
|Citation: ||Callaghan S., When a mother's rights clash with the needs of her unborn child. Sydney Morning Herald, Comment, 9 April 2015.|
|Abstract: ||The recent report of case of a pregnant woman who refused life-saving cancer treatment while heavily pregnant has once again ignited debate within the community about how we should resolve conflicts between a mother's rights and those of her unborn child.
The facts of the case, which occurred in 2009 but was reported in the Journal of Internal Medicine this month, were that a young woman presented to hospital with acute promyelocytic leukaemia and pre-eclampsia, requiring urgent treatment. Her doctors recommended that she receive chemotherapy combined with blood products so that her body could tolerate the cancer treatment, but because of her Jehovah's Witness faith, she refused. She remained steadfast in this decision even though she was told she might die as a result. To further complicate matters, she was nearly 27 weeks pregnant at the time. As her illness progressed her fetus died in utero, and the woman herself died from multiple organ failure just short of two weeks after her admission.
The controversy which has emerged centres on the rights of women to refuse medical treatment when to do so will endanger the lives of their fetuses.|
|Description: ||newspaper commentary|
|Rights and Permissions: ||authors own copyright|
|Type of Work: ||Article, Letter|
|Type of Publication: ||Pre-print|
|Appears in Collections:||Research Papers and Publications. Sydney Health Ethics|
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