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Assisted Reproduction

Thai Surrogate Claims Australian Couple Demanded Twin Abortion After Learning Baby Gammy Had Down Syndrome

Unfortunately the newest allegations shed no new light on where the truth lies as to what really transpired. The only consensus in this horrific mess is that it reflects poorly on all the participants. Worse yet, the unintended victims, the babies, have had their birth stories and legacies tarnished by the indefensible and despicable behavior of the surrogate and the Intended Parents:

The Thai surrogate mother who carried twins for an Australian couple claims she refused their alleged requests for a late-term abortion. Pattaramon Chanbua made headlines recently when she accused the couple of abandoning their critically-ill seven-month-old son Gammy and taking his healthy twin sister when they were born last year. In a new interview the 21-year-old food vendor in Thailand has claimed David and Wendy Farnell insisted that she abort the twins while she was seven months pregnant because of Gammy’s health woes. Baby Gammy has a congenital heart condition and a lung infection in addition to Down syndrome.

“It was the agent … she said that they (the Farnells) wanted to abort both of the children. She said that the parents had been very shocked and frightened… they were insisting on the abortion,” Chanbua told Thai Rath News. “I said I couldn’t do that… cause I was seven months into the pregnancy already.”

Chanbua claims the couple, along with doctors and the surrogacy agency, knew about Gammy’s condition when she was four months along in her pregnancy. She also says that for some unknown reason she was not informed about Gammy’s condition until she was seven months pregnant. “The agency, the doctors as well as the parents knew (about Gammy’s Down Syndrome) already since the fourth month of the pregnancy,” she said.

After refusing to have an abortion, Chanbua was reportedly then given the option to only abort Gammy and keep his healthy twin sister. “They told me that the child would have to be injected with some drugs (or poison) to take his life and then be taken out by surgical process. Then the girl would go into the incubator right away … these words have since then stayed in my head,” she recalled.

On Sunday, the Farnells denied Chanbua’s abandonment and abortion claims in their first TV interview. The couple, who took Gammy’s healthy twin sister, admitted that they would have asked Chanbua to have an abortion had they known about Gammy’s condition earlier.

Australian couple David and Wendy Farnell have denied claims that they abandoned their critically-ill seven-month-old surrogate baby and took his healthy twin sister. “We never abandoned him. We never said to the surrogate mother to have an abortion,” David told Australia’s “60 Minutes” program. “There is always hope. At the very beginning, when we found out he had Down syndrome, we said we still wanted him.”

In a conflicting statement however, David, who is a convicted pedophile, slammed the surrogacy agency for allegedly not informing them about Gammy’s Down Syndrome until the later stages of Chanbua’s pregnancy. He also admitted to demanding a refund because he and his wife were not informed early enough.

Chanbua agreed to be paid 350,000 baht ($10,905.80) for carrying the twins; however, she reportedly was never paid in full. “‘The money that we have given you, give it back to us now,'” David admitted to telling the agency. “Parents want their children to be healthy. It was late in the pregnancy that we learned the boy had Down’s …They sent us the reports but they didn’t do the checks early enough.”


6 comments for “Thai Surrogate Claims Australian Couple Demanded Twin Abortion After Learning Baby Gammy Had Down Syndrome”

  • Dancer

    This is very significant situation
    for such countries as Thailand and India. Sanitary situation leaves much to be
    desired, the health of surrogate mothers are donors is not checked in
    appropriate way. They have a lot of diseases, which affect the children. A lot
    of hidden fees and cheaters! I strongly recommend you to stay away from these
    countries if you want to have healthy children. Unfortunately this couple is
    not the only one. Always couples are looking for low-cost programs and don’t
    pay attention to the main things. Moreover, I understand when you dream about
    children but don’t have enough money for example for surrogacy in US, but there
    are a lot of other options, which are worthwhile. I passed my program in
    Ukraine in Biotexcom clinic, I was looking for that clinic for a long time, I
    checked everything before signing the contract and I had never regretted my
    choice. This is European country, of course they have some disadvantages
    concerning conditions and service, but on the other hand, they are very serious
    about surrogacy, health conditions of donors and mothers, they improve the
    procedure of ivf and increase the chances of positive pregnancies. After first
    attempt I have twins taking into account the fact that before I went through a
    lot of programs in different clinics of different countries. People, be careful
    making you choice, the health of your future children depends on it!

  • Nicol

    This case will affect surrogacy industry in a negative way. Down Syndrome can be identified on the 12 and on the 16 weeks. At this term it is possible to do abortion. But later on it very harmful for surrogate mother. She could not even survive after such late term abortion. The doctors and parents should colaborate. When I was treated in Biotexcom I didnt hear about such cases. Everything went smoothly and wothout any trouble. The medical personal made ultrasounds every month and other examination that were held in order to prevent such deseases.

  • Amber

    Of course they must
    do the screening control. But they don’t and won’t. What can we say about the
    country, clinics of which doesn’t check the health of surrogates and donors.
    The check of medical documents is just for show. Whatever problems with the
    health you have, it doesn’t matter. They will take your for the program in any
    case. Everything is of the money! It is a babies market.

  • Nelly

    Amber, I hope it is not in every country. But we must realize that there are problems all over the world in surrogacy industry. I think it takes place only in Asian countries and in Mexico. Russia also has some troubles with baby registration. So to say these surrogate mothers begin blackmailing intended parents. They just pump out money of poor parents. So we have to be ready to admit it.

  • Luzdelavida

    Surrogate motherhood can be a valuable alternative for a woman who is not fertile. There are many potential parents out there that are not able to have children of their own. Many times, the mother is infertile. An alternative is surrogate motherhood. It’s a way for a couple to become parents using the male sperm of the father and the egg of he mother, merged and inserted into the surrogate mother, and she will become impregnated. I think that European Court of Human Rights is completely right in his decision http://newseurope.info/video/surrogacy-a-form-of-planned-parenting-yet-to-win-eu-wide-acceptance/.

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