Letter: Moral issues raised by 'designer babies'

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The Independent Online
Sir: While the moral dilemmas engendered by some of the latest developments in infertility research are undoubtedly of profound interest and concern, I feel that it is vital that we do not lose sight of a much more straightforward and practical issue.

Infertility treatment on the NHS is in an appalling state. Many health authorities refuse to fund any in-vitro fertilisation effort at all, and it is important to recognise that what is needed for the vast majority of couples requiring IVF is the bringing together of the mother's own egg and the father's own sperm in favourable circumstances. For most of us this procedure poses no moral problems.

It would be a great pity if this furore was to smokescreen the shameful lack of public funding for IVF to benefit many thousands of ordinary people for whom the desire is not for a 'designer baby', but simply for 'their baby'.

Yours sincerely,


Upwell Health Centre

Upwell, Cambridgeshire

5 January