“Wrongful birth” is a rare legal claim that a doctor didn’t provide parents important information on whether to proceed with a pregnancy. A case in the UK demonstrates this claim. BBC reports.
A mother asked for a Down’s syndrome screening for her child during a pre-natal visit. When asked later about the screening during the the checkup, the NHS says that the mother declined it.
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However, the court found that the mother had misunderstood the question. When the baby was later born with Down’s syndrome, the parents were “angry and upset”. The court ruled that the sonographer and a midwife who saw her at a later appointment didn’t do their duty by asking why the mother refused after saying she wanted a screening.
The court said that the plaintiff would have asked for more testing had she been told if her baby had a high risk for Down’s syndrome. They also emphasized that they were not suggesting that the birth of a baby with Down’s syndrome is an unwelcome event.
The parents adore their baby and are determined to give him the best life possible. However, they wanted to get answers about why the child’s Down’s syndrome wasn’t caught early so they could make an informed choice about whether to proceed with the pregnancy.
The couple is expected to receive a settlement in the six-figure range.