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Ethics – Brits selecting sex of babies

November 2018

Hundreds of British couples are spending thousands of pounds to choose the sex of their baby, despite the practice being illegal in the UK, a Daily Mail investigation has revealed.

To circumvent UK law, some senior British doctors are seeing patients in a private clinic before sending them abroad for the procedure. There was a preference for boys among couples of Indian and Chinese origin and a preference for girls among white couples.

The doctors referring couples for treatments abroad told their patients not to mention it to their GPs, with one saying it would cause ‘a lot of aggro’, adding, ‘There’s no reason at all to involve any of your medical carers’.

For the treatments, patients were sent to clinics in Crete, Cyprus or Dubai, where UK courts have no jurisdiction. Dr Lisa Cameron MP called for a full investigation and appropriate action against the medical professionals involved.

Sex selection is strictly prohibited in the UK and the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has launched an investigation. The Daily Mail concluded about the doctors, ‘It is not their job to play God’.

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