LETTER:Orphaned by technology

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From Ms Josephine Quintaville

Sir: We welcome Polly Toynbee's comments regarding unclaimed frozen embryos ("Who'll bear an unwanted foetus?", 2 February), as we are trying to encourage debate at all levels. While the tone of her article was certainly agitated, perhaps a little more emotional focus on the fact that these embryos have been abandoned by their parents might have been expected. To quote Oscar Wilde: "To lose both [parents] looks like carelessness".

It is this carelessness that Core (Comment on Reproductive Ethics) would like to address. There are very serious scientific, legal and moral questions that need to be asked about embryo freezing. Technology rushes ahead but the thinking has yet to be done. All we are asking for at this stage is to hold an extended and open debate with access to as much research and opinion as possible.

The "orphaning" to date of 3,000 frozen embryos is fruit of the present system. We should not rush into any further mistakes.

Yours sincerely,

Josephine Quintaville


Comment on Reproductive Ethics

London, SW3

2 February