An Essex couple have shared how they rejected doctors’ advice to abort their unborn disabled child.
Parents Denzil and Elle were told after a routine 20-week scan that the baby they were expecting had Edwards’ syndrome, or Trisomy 18.
Baby Amelia is now two months old and thriving after leaving hospital and returning to the couple’s home in East London.
The parents said they had felt pressured by doctors at St Thomas’ Hospital in London to consider having an abortion.
Mother Elle said: “They were discriminating against her before they even gave her a chance.
“They weren’t offering me monitoring during the pregnancy to check the baby’s heartbeat because she had Edwards’ Syndrome.”
Left to die
Edwards’ syndrome occurs in around one in 3,000 to 6,000 live births and usually just one in every twelve babies born with it survive beyond their first twelve months.
It is such a shame that women are convinced to give up their children before they are even born
Amelia’s mother says the decision to stand up for the life of her daughter was the right stance to take.
“She would have died if we hadn’t fought for her,” Elle said.
“They said they would put her in a cot and leave us to have some time with her. But now she is doing amazingly”.
Amelia was born on 10 May after a caesarean section and was immediately put in intensive care.
At one point, she stopped breathing before being resuscitated by doctors at the hospital.
After spending 16 days in the Intensive Care Unit, Amelia was given the all-clear to go home.
“It just seems to us that they wrote her off before she was even here without giving it a second thought,” said father Denzil.
“It is such a shame that women are convinced to give up their children before they are even born.”
Denzil knows there is an uncertain future ahead for his daughter but says “at the end of the day she is a human being, and she is our child”.