Skip to Full Menu

Providing information, education, and training to build knowledge, develop skills, and change attitudes that will lead to increased independence, productivity, self determination, integration and inclusion (IPSII) for people with developmental disabilities and their families.

Two Cases Regarding Abortion And Potential Disability
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
March 24, 2003

LONDON, ENGLAND--Two separate cases in the news emerged last week having to do with doctors' advice regarding abortion and the unborn child's potential to have disability.

The High Court ruled Monday that Amanda Godfrey has the right to sue her health care authority because it failed to tell her "how seriously disabled" her daughter would be.

Godfrey's lawyers claim that when she was pregnant in October 1994 with her daughter, Jessica, ultrasound scans showed there was a danger the girl would be born with disabilities. Instead of telling her this, doctors at Gloucestershire Royal Infirmary gave Godfrey an "overly-optimistic prognosis".

Her mother said that if she had been told that there was "a high chance of a poor outcome" she would have had an abortion.

Jessica was born with brain damage. She died last month at seven years of age.

According to the BBC, Godfrey is suing the NHS Trust for damages to cover the costs of Jessica's care and compensation for her own pain and emotional suffering.

No date was set for Godfrey's full hearing. The Trust is expected to deny liability.

In an unrelated story, a 22-year-old mother told The Sun Newspaper that she was told by Dr. Andrew Gbinigie to have an abortion because her unborn daughter was "malformed" and might have Down syndrome or spina bifida.

Tina Palmer refused.

Her daughter Naomi, now three, does not appear to have any disabilities.

"If we had done that we wouldn't have our lovely girl," Palmer said. "She has changed our lives."

Related resource:
The Sun Newspaper

---

©2017 The Minnesota Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities
 370 Centennial Office Building  658 Cedar Street   St. Paul, Minnesota 55155 
Phone: 651.296.4018   Toll-free number: 877.348.0505   MN Relay Service: 800.627.3529 OR 711   Fax: 651.297.7200 
Email: admin.dd@state.mn.us   View Privacy Policy   An Equal Opportunity Employer 

The GCDD is funded under the provisions of P.L. 106-402. The federal law also provides funding to the Minnesota Disability Law Center,the state Protection and Advocacy System, and to the Institute on Community Integration, the state University Center for Excellence. The Minnesota network of programs works to increase the IPSII of people with developmental disabilities and families into community life.