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Doctors Deplore First US 'Baby Supermarket'

Contact: Margie Shealy, Christian Medical Association, 888-231-2637, 423-341-4254 cell, margie.shealy@cmda.org

WASHINGTON, Jan. 8 /Christian Newswire/ -- The nation's largest faith-based association of doctors today said that a Texas fertility clinic is violating ethical principles in "grading babies like meat in a supermarket."

Dr. David Stevens, CEO of the 17,000-member Christian Medical Association reacted to news  [Embryo Bank] that the Texas-based IVF Clinic Abraham Center of Life is offering to match sperm and egg donors to meet criteria desired by consumers.

"This designer baby scheme crosses ethical and moral boundaries by turning babies into commodities," Dr. Stevens asserted. "By stressing the educational level of sperm and egg donors, this center is preying on parents who have fallen victim to the false notion that babies are a status symbol, and that intelligence, race or appearance are somehow measures of worth. Do we really want to grade babies like meat in a supermarket?

“This affront to human dignity shows why we cannot continue to allow such clinics to operate beyond moral and regulatory constraints."

Dr. Gene Rudd, an Obstetrician-Gynecologist and CMA's Associate Executive Director, noted, “This is eugenics--the science of 'improving' a population by controlled breeding to increase the occurrence of certain characteristics. And we have seen in recent history where eugenics leads.

"Besides the ethical wrongs, this embryo marketing scheme also poses potential harm to women who undergo hyperovulation procedures to harvest their eggs.”

CMA member Dr. Jeffrey Keenan, IVF Specialist and Medical Director for the National Embryo Donation Center, noted, "The creation of ‘designer embryos’ for sale to unrelated individuals is the commodification of human life for financial purposes by unscrupulous scientists and physicians. This activity is deemed unethical by all organizations who have addressed it, and is illegal in many developed countries. Human life is sacred and should never be bought or sold at any stage of development.”

To schedule an interview, please contact Margie Shealy at (423) 844-1047 or by e-mail: margie.shealy@cmda.org. The Christian Medical Association is equipped with Ku Band Digital Uplink satellite and ISDN lines.