The Morality of Induced Delivery of the Anencephalic Fetus Prior to Viability
Walsh, James L.
McQueen, Moira M.
Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal. 1993 Dec; 3(4): 357-369.
In situations where anencephaly is diagnosed and where the mother's life or health is threatened Roman Catholic hospitals are faced with the dilemma of waiting until viability before inducing the fetus, thus potentially putting the mother at further risk. According to most Roman Catholic ethicists, induced delivery before viability is contrary to the Church's prohibition of direct killing of the innocent. The authors propose for discussion a reconsideration of this position in the case of the anencephalic fetus and conclude that taking the life of such a fetus does not constitute an attack on its personal dignity and therefore is morally permissible.
Abortion; Active Euthanasia; Anencephaly; Attitudes; Brain; Brain Pathology; Catholic Hospitals; Death; Double Effect; Ethicists; Ethics; Euthanasia; Fetal Development; Fetuses; Health; Hospitals; Intention; Killing; Life; Maternal Health; Mental Health; Morality; Mother Fetus Relationship; Personhood; Pregnant Women; Prognosis; Risk; Roman Catholic Ethics; Selective Abortion; Self Concept; Social Interaction; Theology; Therapeutic Abortion; Value of Life; Viability;
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