Rutgers Journal of Bioethics
This essay reviews the emerging concept of perinatal hospice as a way to support mothers who are carrying pregnancies that are expected to end in stillbirths or neonatal death. The paper reviews scholarly literature, as well as personal accounts and memoirs of patients who have experienced perinatal loss, both with and without the support of perinatal hospice. Increasing use of prenatal diagnosis means that a greater number of lethal anomalies will be detected prior to birth, resulting in greater numbers of women facing the difficult choice between terminating the pregnancy and carrying to term. Perinatal hospice fills a current void that leaves women who choose to continue their pregnancies without adequate medical, emotional, and social support. This review suggests that perinatal hospice should be recognized by perinatal health professionals as a valid course of care offered to all women and families facing perinatal death.
Allison M. Whelan, Perinatal Hospice, 5 Rutgers J. Bioethics 32 (2014).
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Allison M. Whelan,
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