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Defending life
from conception to natural death


News, 25 April 2000

25 April 2000

25 April 2000 Christopher Reeve, Superman film actor, has called for the lifting of a US federal law banning government funding of research involving human embryos. Mr Reeve, who was paralysed after falling from a horse in 1995, said that all research should be funded and supervised by the federal government. Researchers believe that cells from embryos could be used to make new body parts or develop therapies for diseases such as Alzheimer's. [22nd April, Reuters (from Pro-Life Infonet)] A group of bereaved relatives is to take the British Government to court in an attempt to halt passive euthanasia. 'SOS-NHS Patients in Danger' will challenge the legality of British Medical Association guidelines, drawn up in consultation with the Department of Health, which permit doctors to withdraw food and water from stroke victims or those suffering from dementia. The action will be taken under the 1998 Human Rights Act which comes into force from October and incorporates the articles of the 1953 European Convention on Human Rights. [The Times, 22nd April] The Times newspaper has reported that police and health chiefs in Britain are investigating more than 60 cases of unofficial euthanasia. In the biggest case, nurses have claimed that 40 dementia sufferers on a geriatric ward in Kingway Hospital, Derby, were starved and dehydrated to death and a file on six of these deaths has been sent by police to the Crown Prosecution Service. [The Times, 22nd April] Altering diet and lifestyle may be an alternative to in vitro fertilisation treatment in many cases, according the British nutritional therapist Dr Marilyn Glenville. She has said that diet can dramatically enhance fertility. [The Daily Telegraph, 21st April] The treatment of elderly patients, and particularly recent concerns about "do not resuscitate" orders, will be among the topics covered by a national consultation exercise on the health service to be undertaken by the British Government from today. Ministers will tour the country meeting National Health Service staff and members of the public will also be invited to give their opinions. [The Daily Telegraph, 25th April] [This bulletin is privately circulated by the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children,, 5/6 St Matthew Street, London, United Kingdom, SW1P 2JT, +44 20 7222 3763. The reliability of the news herein is dependent on that of the cited sources, which are paraphrased rather than quoted. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the society. Please forward this bulletin to other interested parties. To unsubscribe, send an appropriate email to]

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