Friday, November 28, 2008

UK survey reveals lower abortion rate.

After the widespread introduction of screening for Down's syndrome in 1989, the number of babies born with the condition in the UK each year fell from 717 to 594 at the start of this decade.
Since 2000, the birth rate has increased, reaching 749 in 2006, the latest year for which figures are available.
Figures from the National Down's Syndrome Cytogenetic Register show that the proportion of new born children with Down's syndrome rose by around 15 per cent between 2000 and 2006.

A survey was conducted to determine what was responsible for this trend:
The findings will be featured in the documentary "Born with Down's Syndrome" to be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 at 8pm today.
They show that while religious or pro-life beliefs counted in around a third of cases, many parents felt that life and society had improved for people affected by Down's. Others said their decision was influenced by the fact that they knew people with Down's or other disabilities

Which, once again, is my reason for taking time out of a busy weekend with visiting family; to spread the news that life with Down syndrome is more than worth living, it's a special gift.

Read the entire story at the UK Telegraph.
HT MercatorNet


welcometo said...

Hi Leticia,

Unfortunately those news reports only tell half the story. While the survey of parents does support a more positive view of Down's syndrome the national statistics show that the rate of abortion has actually stayed the same. What has happened is that there has been a big rise in the number of diagnosed cases. The head of the Down's syndrome birth register has put this down to the increased average maternal age. Proportionately less of these diagnosed cases resulted in a live birth in 2006 (40%) than in 1989 (69%). If the birth rate matched the diagnosis rate it should have been up 50% not 15%. I've written more about this here:

Leticia said...

I'm sorry to hear that. I thought we were making progress.

Leticia said...

I'm sorry to hear that. I thought we were making progress.