Premature baby ‘left to die’ by doctors after mother gives birth just two days before 22-week care limit

Is this what ObamaCare would be like? 

(DAILY MAIL) — Doctors left a premature baby to die because he was born two days too early, his devastated mother claimed yesterday.

Sarah Capewell begged them to save her tiny son, who was born just 21 weeks and five days into her pregnancy  –  almost four months early.

They ignored her pleas and allegedly told her they were following national guidelines that babies born before 22 weeks should not be given medical treatment.

via Premature baby ‘left to die’ by doctors after mother gives birth just two days before 22-week care limit | Mail Online.


  1. Ms. Gilbert,

    I became a Neonatal Intensive Care Nurse 10 years ago. At that time the U.S. guidelines for “viability” were 24 wks and/or 501 gm. Today the current guidelines are 22 wks and/or 401 gm. Please note that the guidelines are “and/or” so you only need one not both. This change in guidelines has been a result of improvements in both ventilation, medication and care. The reasons these guidelines are set is because morbidity and mortality rates for infants who are younger and weigh less than the guidelines are extremely poor. Also, equipment such as endotracheal tubes for intubation are often not small enough, current ventilation technology is inadequate for infants of that size and central venous/arterial lines are not small enough to place in infants whose age is less than 22 wks and/or 401 gm.

    I cannot speak for the guidelines in the U.K. but I hopefully have shed some light on the guidelines currently adopted in the U.S. I think the best way to form opinions on a subject is to be informed of all sides of the argument. It’s very easy to be fearful that healthcare reform will “leave infants to die” if they are deemed “too risky to save”. However, when technology limits our ability to save such infants I think it’s an unfair argument to make.

  2. Hello,

    I am sorry for the mother of the premature birth, her baby’s viability decisions were out out of her hands and that had to be heart wrenching to suffer. While the explanation helped to understand how humans can simply walk away from a living being.

    This reminds me of the past and just about EVERY womens issue and concern, as far as medical treatment for most of what we had suffered. PMS, its just your time get used to it.. breast cancer, heart issues the list goes on. Our concerns had seemed the last to be addressed, period.

    If Vetenarians can treat birds and other small mammals cannot some of the equipment that is used not be adapted for infants?

    My main point being with the tecnology we have and can produce, how is it nothing has been designed to address those issues. However the fact is something may have been underlying to cause the miscarriage, which may have been behind the ultimate assessment of treatment for the birth.

    I know of a few people who had very premature children who developed and grew bigger and stronger then had been suggested by the treating physicians as to their future lives.

    I also have to add my further PERSONAL feelings about excepted rules, guidelines, suggestions and the general push to have women produce mini elephants who become mother elephants during and well after their pregnancy.

    Would those same accepted pushes into fatting up during pregnancy not have the direct effect of our current National obesity epidemic, diabetes and heart issues in both the mother and children who are growing up just as obese. Not to mention the further fact that so many doctors turned to cesarean as apposed to natural birth.

    If had had to push out baby elephants I would have been subjected to repeated cuts for my 4 children. I am all of 5’1″ and pre-pregnancy weight always held at 105. My last child was born when I was 43 she weighed in at 18.lbs and gosh I would need to pull the birth book out but at least 21 inches. I am in my early fifties and stay around 110.

    All my children especially the two adults in the later twenties have never had any BMI issues nor any weight fluctuations, however we never ate in excess to begin with. My just thirty, oldest daughter had two children who are now 14 and 16 she gained enough to have nice healthy sized babies She is the same slender perfect weight all 5′ 7″ of her. My son is 27, same thing and uses a gym for the added fitness benefit. It is my two younger girls who gain a few extra pounds which has more to do with avoiding the dangers of too much sun exposure and heat then the added video and computer activity. Both were born in AZ and now in hot humid tropical GA. But 5 pounds over during the summer to avoid over sun exposure in Az and the loss of fluids and inhibiting tropical humidity here and now. They do the local Agua center and beaches and a great outdoors activity camp.

    I am beyond the topic I apologize, but I just feel guidelines can be justified sure, but they are guidelines there should always be exceptions. If you believe in miracles and especially if you know your own body better and longer than the good Doctor.

    With that said, I do understand the known and generally accepted underlying extensive complications associated with premature births and I imagine many more considerations that I personally would have no knowledge of, but also exist.

    Add to that the fact that, if a child in the future develops something which a lawyer can in any way attach to the birth and subsequent treatment many parents line up to sue.

    Still it is a heart wrenching experience for anyone to have gone through.

  3. They don’t know the exact date of conception. That is an unknown variable of maybe even a week. Depending upon the date of the last known menstral cycle. I always thought my new week of gestation started on Friday, my obgyn thought Saturday. Come on. Seriously? The weight would be a factor here, but still… I am so sorry that happend. Mine was born early as well. I feel for any parent and could only imagine the pain and heart ache associated with this mother. Sorry to read.

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