Published October 23, 2015
A Council of Europe committee has drafted a resolution that would instruct medical staff to withhold revealing the sex of the fetus in an attempt to prevent parents from “selectively aborting,” The Daily Telegraph reported.
The resolution would apply to all 47 member states – so midwives and doctors would be unable to tell expectant parents if their baby is a boy or a girl.
Some doctors are expressing concern over the recommendation.
Dr. Gillian Lockwood, medical director of Midland Fertility Services in the U.K., said some parents may be able to figure out the gender themselves, while looking at ultrasound screens.
Dr. Manny Alvarez, senior managing editor of FoxNewsHealth.com, said he is not surprised by the resolution, but it does not make sense.
“There are parents that specifically want an ultrasound to determine the sex so they can consider sex selection,” he said. “(But) the consensus of withholding information from a parent falls against the grain of a relationship between a doctor and a patient. It violates ethics.”
Alvarez said the practice could never be done in America, as any documented medical data done on a patient immediately becomes the patient’s property.
Parenting groups say parents will be upset if this resolution is passed.
"I can understand that there may be problems in some parts of the world with sex selection, but it seems ridiculous to apply the thinking to countries where this has not been shown to be a problem,” said Justine Roberts, founder of parenting website Mumsnet.
"I think pregnant women would feel pretty angry and disappointed to be told they can't be told the gender of their unborn child."
Alvarez said the gender can be determined anywhere from week 14 to 16. It is up to the government, or as in America, each state to determine when an abortion can be performed.
The resolution will be presented to the council’s Parliamentary Assembly in October.