Hidden camera: Doctor in hospital with Catholic ties urges Down syndrome test, abortion
BARCELONA, November 1, 2012, (LifeSiteNews.com) – Footage from a hidden video camera leaked to LifeSiteNews.com shows a doctor at a historically Catholic Barcelona hospital recommending a Down syndrome test to a pregnant woman so that she can abort the child if the result is positive.
The video was taken at the Santa Creu i Sant Pau Hospital, which is partially administered by the Archdiocese of Barcelona, in September, and shows a meeting between hospital staff and a pregnant woman who is accompanied by her brother and a friend. During the meeting the woman is informed that a test has indicated that she has a high risk of carrying a Down syndrome baby.
The doctor overseeing the case recommends that she be given a placental biopsy to verify the presence of Down syndrome, so that she can obtain a legal “interruption of pregnancy” should the baby turn out to have the disability.
Although he notes that the test itself will cause miscarriage in 1-2 percent of cases, the doctor encourages the woman to have the test done quickly, warning that “if we pass 21 or 22 weeks the law places many obstacles in the way of interrupting the pregnancy, unless there is a very grave abnormality.”
“If, for example, it has Down syndrome and we pass 22 weeks of pregnancy, we can have problems for, if you don’t want to continue the pregnancy, for doing a legal interruption of pregnancy,” the doctor adds.
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When the woman expresses doubt about doing the test, the doctor turns to her brother, asking: “You, if you were to have a child with Down syndrome, would you want to continue with the pregnancy?” in an apparent attempt to enlist him in favor of the test.
“Yes,” the brother answers, and the woman agrees.
After verifying that the woman doesn’t want to kill her unborn child, even if the baby has Down syndrome, the doctor states that “it doesn’t make much sense to do the test, because the test isn’t useful for anything except for deciding if you’re going to continue the pregnancy or not, if some abnormality is shown.”
The video also provides verification of what Barcelona priest Fr. Custodio Ballester, the St. Andrew’s Cross Association, and other pro-life activists have long alleged: that abortions continue to be done at the hospital.
When the woman asks if she could “get rid of the baby” at the Sant Pau Hospital itself, the doctor acknowledges that abortions are performed there in “extremely serious” cases, but “the law does permit you to do it, depending on what problems you have. If you can’t do it here, then at another location.”
The doctor’s statements are consonant with continuing reports that the Sant Pau Hospital is performing eugenic abortions on infants who suffer a malformation in the womb.
After the Spanish media revealed public records indicating that abortions were taking place in the Sant Pau Hospital and other Barcelona-area hospitals affiliated with the Catholic Church, the Archdiocese of Barcelona stonewalled inquiries for months, then claimed through an anonymous spokesman that no such abortions had taken place. The Archdiocese then claimed that an order had been given not to perform abortions, although the hospital itself has admitted that it is continuing to do them in some cases.
The video was taken by members of the Immaculate Conception of Hospitalet parish, whose pastor is Fr. Custodio Ballester, a leading critic of the archdiocese’s collaboration with abortionist hospitals in Barcelona.
Fr. Custodio Ballester denounces the “collaborationism” of the Archdiocese of Barcelona
Fr. Ballester told LifeSiteNews.com that “the pertinacity with which abortions are practiced - above all eugenic ones - is evident,” and denounced the claim that the presence of priests from the archdiocese on the board of the hospital was curbing such abuses as a “delusion.”
“Participating in the government of a hospital and making one’s self an accomplice of a certain number of abortions with the hope that in this way—with our presence—they won’t carry out a greater number, is collaborationism pure and simple,” he wrote in an e-mail to LifeSiteNews.
“The scandal of diocesan participation in those hospitals is not repaired with complicit silence nor with a comfortable collaborationism, with some pretty declarations of condemnation once a year, but rather with resistance: with public, valiant, and risky testimony of those who believe that the life of man is sacred,” Ballester stated.
The priest also noted that “In the last conversation I had with the Cardinal, he told me that they had assured him that they were not doing abortions. This was denied by the new manager of the hospital, who said that they do ‘medical abortions.’”
“The archdiocese hasn’t denied the information yet and we [pro-lifers] are very indignant,” he added.
Ldo. Sergi Gordo Rodríguez (Secretario General y Canciller)
Arzobispado de Barcelona
Calle del Obispo 5, Barcelona 08002
Telephone: (011) (34) 93.270.10.10
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