By Hilary White

  BIRMINGHAM, April 20, 2007 ( – The UK’s Evening Standard reports on a new study of hospitals in the West Midlands region of England that has found that one in 30 babies aborted for medical reasons is born alive and lived for an average of 80 minutes.

  The study, conducted by the West Midlands Perinatal Institute and published in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, looked at 3,189 abortions performed on “seriously handicapped” babies at 20 hospitals between 1995 and 2004. Some of the children born alive after attempted abortion lived as long as six hours. Most of the children in the study were between 20 and 24 weeks old when they were killed.

  102 of the “seriously handicapped”, killed for having Down’s syndrome or heart defects, survived the “procedure”. Under British law, abortion up to 24 weeks is allowed for “health” reasons including the idea that pregnancy might be a threat to the “mental health or well-being of the mother. After that point a “severe handicap” such as Down’s syndrome or a cleft palate is necessary.

  Most of the abortions were what is now called “medical” meaning chemically induced miscarriages in which the child dies from the trauma of premature birth. This method, the study found, results in the high numbers of survivals, particularly in later term children.

  The study’s numbers are described by the Evening Standard as “the tip of the iceberg” given that the West Midlands region accounts for only a tenth of the “terminations” in the UK.

  The pro-life group Alive and Kicking said, “This can’t just be happening in the West Midlands. It begs the question of how many healthy babies must be surviving? It would suggest the true figure must be much higher.”
“With live births after abortion occurring in 18 out of the 20 maternity units in the West Midlands alone, it is difficult to comprehend the numbers of babies around the country left fighting for their lives.”