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Are Premature Babies Worth Fighting For?

Posted by Marketing Team on Fri, Aug 09, 2013 @ 08:44 AM

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Photo by Lindsay Mgbor/Department for International Development

I don’t even know where to start. I’m feeling rather confused and frustrated over this particular subject. I’m hoping that writing my thoughts down will help me reach some sort of conclusion. The contents of this blog have been on my mind for a whole week. I’m troubled and just need to speak up. Who knows who is gonna read this but if you do, I hope you understand.

Every once in a while there are certain topics that float around on the internet; they gather a following and a ton of people comment on them. People share or create content surrounding whatever a particularly topic is at the time. This week, starting on Monday, I’ve seen a lot of blogs, articles and facebook posts regarding the “worth” or “quality of life” when it comes to premature babies. Normally when I read about topics online, I keep my opinion off the world-wide-web. However, this particular topic has me all fired up; I’ve been thinking about it for days and I have to say something.

Are premature babies worth it? Are they worth it? Is trying to save a life worth it? I don’t know how to answer this question other than, “Yeah, to me they are worth it.” Who is to decide whether or not a human being is worth trying to save based on their circumstances of coming into the world? As I look at all of the precious photographs online of babies born too early and how they’ve grown into amazing young adults or children, I just cannot comprehend them being not “worth it” or those families being without their children, how devastating. As far as the precious photographs I've ve seen of babies who don't make it home to their families, If that was me, I would want to know that the hospital staff did everything they could do to at least TRY to help my baby survive.

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Photo by TomMarkhamPhotographer flickr.com

Are premature babies worth going through all the trouble, all the money, all the time and energy? Are premature babies worth fighting for? What if parents and families go to great lengths to keep their premature baby alive and he or she ends up dying anyway or living the rest of their life with complications or disabilities? I have to ask: What is SO scary about disabilities that someone would think a life isn’t worth saving? I am in no way saying that having a child with disabilities is an easy path to walk but what life path isn’t difficult? If every life path is difficult, then why isn’t every life worth trying to save?

Can I also say that we are ALL disabled in one way or another:

·         Emotionally

·         Mentally

·         Physically

·         Spiritually

Whether or not we’ve been diagnosed, there are areas in each and every one of our lives that we struggle with, have complications with, have a “disability.” Does that mean that all of our lives aren’t worth living? Who is to say if a life someone lives is a worth-while, fulfilling life? What does “quality of life” even mean? What about the children who are born full term with no diagnosed disabilities but their parents abuse them, or they live in poverty and don’t get a meal every day or they are severely bullied at school, does that mean those children shouldn’t live because their quality of life might be “low.” I’m just having trouble tracking and understanding the concept of hearing people ask, “Why go through all the trouble to help a premature baby live if their life is going to be very difficult on them and their parents?”

What about children who have not been diagnosed with a disability and cause their parents a lot of money, grief and energy because of their lifestyle choices? Does that mean their life isn’t worth living? Life is hard. Being a parent is hard. Whether your child has been diagnosed with disabilities or not. But we all seem to adapt somehow (some better than others). I just don’t get it. Why not use the amazing technology we have today to give all premature babies a fighting chance. We’ve come so far in this industry and it seems insulting to contemplate not helping a baby to live, at least see if they respond or not.

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Photo by {| h.e.a.t.h.e.r. |} via flickr.com

I get it. I know it’s a difficult decision to make: keeping the machines on, or not. Again, I am not dismissing the difficulty of it all; I am merely addressing the question of whether or not attempting to help a premature baby live is “worth it.”

In reality (and as a side note), I don't believe it's us that decide whether a baby lives or dies. Doctors, nurses, therapists and specialists may do everything they can, or know how to do, and a patient can still die. Or they may decide to do nothing and a patient lives. People tend to think that they have the power to decide to keep someone alive or not. IT’S NOT UP TO THEM. The true fate lies in the hands of someone much more powerful than us.

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There. I don’t feel 100% better but I feel better having written this down, I got it on paper and I shared it. Maybe now my mind will relax about the issue. Maybe not. Either way, I believe in the industry that I am a part of and I will work every day, doing my part to help the world’s smallest patients live another day and have hope for a better tomorrow.


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Written by Lesli Lucier, Marketing Intern at Beevers Medical Solutions

Topics: neonatal, baby, Beevers Medical Solutions, hospital, developmental, respiratory, CPAP, resuscitation, Cannulaide, Infant, NICU, preemie, nurse, beevers, Beevers Manufacturing, 2013, premature, babies