A shocking report from the new conservative news web site The Daily Signal is making the waves around the Internet today.
When it comes to premature babies, parents already face tremendous pressure to have abortions. And when the government comes in and tells parents of premature babies there is a new government study they can be involved with that will benefit babies born well before their normal delivery date, there is a certain level of trust one ought to be able to expect.
But, as the report states, that trust was grossly violated in what is nothing less than nonconsensual government experimentation on hundreds of premature babies.
Below is an excerpt from the report and LifeNews encourages you to read the entire news article:
Just 24 weeks into her pregnancy, Sharrissa Cook gave birth to a critically ill baby boy. Dreshan weighed in at a fragile 1 pound, 11 ounces. He lay motionless in the incubator, connected to tubes and monitors in the neonatal intensive care unit at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital.
“He was so tiny,” Cook recalls. “I was a first-time mom. I didn’t have a clue. I didn’t know what to expect.”
It was Oct. 11, 2006. Medical personnel asked Cook, then a 26-year-old single mother, to enroll little Dreshan in a study. She says they described it as a program offering assistance and encouragement to preemies—premature babies—and their families. She readily signed the consent form.
“I remember them telling me they were a support group who would pretty much hold my hand through the developmental process,” Cook says.
But in reality, the study was much more than that. It was a national, government-funded experiment on 1,316 extremely premature infants in which their fate may as well have rested with the flip of a coin.
Other single moms were among those persuaded to sign up their critically ill babies at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital describe similar misunderstandings of the study’s purpose.
Bernita Lewis, then a 22-year-old student, says she enrolled her premature newborn, Christian, after medical personnel told her it simply was to gather data such as weight and height.
And Survonda Banks, then 21, unemployed and on public assistance, says someone handed her the consent form on her way in for an emergency C-section at 28 weeks of pregnancy. Banks remembers being told only that it was a way to help her baby, Destiny.
‘Parents Were Misled’
The government-backed study is called SUPPORT, which stands for “Surfactant, Positive Airway Pressure, and Pulse Oximetry Randomized Trial.” The experiment was conducted at 23 academic institutions from 2005 through 2009 under the National Institutes of Health, part of the Department of Health and Human Services.
All three women now say they never would have agreed to take part if they had known the NIH-funded study’s true nature—to randomly manipulate preemie oxygen levels. They discovered that just last year.
Dreshan and Christian are now 7 years old and both struggle with myriad health problems. Destiny died within three weeks. The mothers wonder: Did the experiment contribute to any of the medical problems of their children?
“[Dreshan] was already at a slim chance of surviving; why would I make his chances of surviving more slim?” Cook asks.
Today, nine months after the federal government convened a public meeting to examine the subject, NIH and HHS officials have yet to propose a remedy to avoid a repeat of the controversy that erupted from the multiyear study.
Read the full article at The Daily Signal.