Re: [Histonet] Hospital fetus disposition survey

From:"Amanda MacFarlane"

In response to John Kiernan's reply:

The question to which John Kiernan was replying is valid and deserves an
objective response based on the specific questions asked.

The Histonet should not be used as a forum for grandstanding, especially
in regards to a highly controversial subject such as abortion, whether you
share pro-life or pro-choice views.

I found this response both unprofessional in its strong and uncalled for
opinion, which is not even a direct response to the questions asked; it is
also wrong in regards to abortions performed in Canada, in hospital or
otherwise. In Canada, 90% of abortions are performed in the first
trimester, and doctors do not perform abortions past 20 to 21 weeks except
for health or genetic reasons.

This is a professional forum, let's please keep our reponses as such and
our personal opions to ourselves.


Amanda MacFarlane, PhD
Division of Nutritional Sciences
Cornell University

> Dear Tony,
> The Australian regulations reflect your country's
> ethical standards, which are probably the highest in
> the world when it comes to recognizing human embryos,
> human fetuses and demented adults as human beings.
> How do Australian abortionists dispose of their
> spoils? In Canada, paid-for abortuses go through
> a kitchen-sink garbage masher and then into
> the drains. Abortion is legal in Canada right up
> to 40 weeks, with the intrauterine decapitation
> method. Any Canadian baby can be killed just before
> birth at the whim of its mother. The mother must
> not be asked for a reason, but she has to pay
> the abortionist's fee.
> John Kiernan
> London, Canada
> -------------------------
> Tony Henwood wrote:
>> Cindy,
>> The laws in Australia are different to elsewhere but in summery:
>> Stillborns greater than 20 weeks need to be buried/cremated.
>> Under 20 weeks to be disposed of a/c to families wishes. At our
>> hospital,
>> unless otherwise requested, we keep the fetuses for 6 months prior to
>> having
>> them cremated by a local crematorium. The ashes are then sprinkled on
>> the
>> rose garden at the hospital. The crematorium does this as a big favour
>> and
>> we are in their debt. This procedure only applies to those fetuses that
>> have
>> had a postmortem. The parents permission is always obtained.
>> Hope this helps
>> Tony Henwood JP, MSc, BAppSc, GradDipSysAnalys, CT(ASC)
>> Laboratory Manager & Senior Scientist
>> The Children's Hospital at Westmead,
>> Locked Bag 4001, Westmead, 2145, AUSTRALIA.
>> Tel: 612 9845 3306
>> Fax: 612 9845 3318
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From:
>> [] On Behalf Of
>> Sent: Wednesday, 24 August 2005 2:40 AM
>> To:
>> Subject: [Histonet] Hospital fetus disposition survey
>> Histonetters,
>> We are evaluating our current practices for fetus disposal at our
>> facility
>> and would like to know how both Catholic and non-Catholic hospitals
>> handle
>> fetus disposition at their facilities. I am interested in practices for
>> both fetal loss greater than 20 weeks gestation  AND less than 20 weeks
>> gestation (products of conception).
>> Please include religious affiliation, if any, of your institution.
>> 1.      Are parents given the option to have the hospital handle the
>> disposition for the remains at < 20 wks, >20 weeks, or both?
>> 2.      If parents opt for hospital disposition, is it handled on-site,
>> or
>> contracted by the hospital off-site (with a funeral home)?  If off-site,
>> is the patient charged for disposition?
>> 3.      Method of disposition? Cremation? Burial? Other?
>> 4.      Are remains collected/disposed of separately, or co-mingled with
>> other tissues?
>> 5.      Is disposal method dictated by State Law? Please include state.
>> Any additional information you can give me about your practices would be
>> helpful.
>> Thank you in advance for your help.
>> Cindy
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