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Mandatory Prenatal Testing and Counseling

Updated on December 29, 2015

Academic

Before you read this Hub please read this first:


I wrote this hub in an academic manner. I mean no offence towards anyone who feels these test should or should not be mandatory. This was written as an academic research exercise. I would welcome and constructive polite arguments for or against just please respect everyone's feelings.

I also do NOT feel that anyone should be forced to have a test done that would put themselves of their child in harms way.

I believe prenatal testing and counseling should be mandatory under certain conditions. I believe everyone should receive prenatal testing for conditions that have treatment options both before and after birth. I do not believe it should be mandatory to receive prenatal testing to discover if the baby has birth defects, like Down’s syndrome (March of Dimes, 2015). There is no reason anyone should be required to know if there child has a genetic condition like Down’s syndrome, but there are plenty of reasons that the parents and medical providers should know if the child has a medical condition that can be treated prior to birth or immediately after birth. If the prenatal testing discovers that the baby has an abnormality, like a serious heart condition, then the medical provider may be able to do a pre-birth procedure to correct it (The Benefits of Prenatal Testing, n.d.). Even if a pre-birth procedure is not an option it is still important that the medical provider knowns about the condition as a specialist can be arranged to be on hand for delivery to assist the child or a special facility could be recommended for the birth where the child could receive better care and treatment than at a regular hospital (The Benefits of Prenatal Testing, n.d.).

Prenatal counseling should be mandatory for people over the age of 33, women with abnormal results from prenatal screening tests, couples with a family history of a genetic condition, couples who have experienced multiple miscarriages, people who are carriers of a genetic condition, and women concerned about exposure from medications or infections during pregnancy (Genetic Counseling: Prenatal Diagnosis and Treatment Center, n.d.). Prenatal counseling is a process that provides information and guidance to a couple who are concerned about their chances of having a child with a genetic disorder or birth defect; this process is designed to ease the couple through the testing, treatment, and other options available (Prenatal Genetic Counseling, 2015). The genetic counselor helps the couple to understand the technical and scientific information; the counselor also helps the couple with their feelings so that they can make informed choices on what is best for their family (Prenatal Genetic Counseling, 2015). Prenatal counseling should be mandatory for anyone who has prenatal testing done to discover if their baby has birth defects, like Down’s syndrome, that are not treatable before or after birth. These people should receive prenatal counseling so that they receive the help and information they need to be able to make an informed decision on the future of their child.

References

Genetic Counseling: Prenatal Diagnosis and Treatment Center. (n.d.). Retrieved October 12, 2015, from http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/gynecology_obstetrics/specialty_areas/maternal_fetal_medicine/services/genetic_counseling_prenatal_diagnosis_treatment_center.html

March of Dimes. (2015). Prenatal tests. Retrieved October 12, 2015, from http://www.marchofdimes.org/pregnancy/prenatal-tests.aspx

Prenatal Genetic Counseling. (2015). Retrieved October 12, 2015, from http://www.babycenter.com/0_prenatal-genetic-counseling_1607.bc

The Benefits of Prenatal Testing. (n.d.). Retrieved October 12, 2015, from http://www.whattoexpect.com/pregnancy/benefits-of-prenatal-testing/

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