Mother claims she was denied an abortion despite baby’s condition

A BR mother has to decide to carry her baby to term even though she says doctors tell her it will not survive or find a state where she can have an abortion.
Published: Aug. 15, 2022 at 5:54 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - A Baton Rouge mother has a week to make an unthinkable decision - carry her baby to term even though she says doctors tell her it will not survive or find another state where she can have an abortion.

“It’s hard knowing that ... you know I’m carrying it to bury know what I’m saying,” asked Nancy Davis who is 13 weeks pregnant with her second child.

Davis got her first ultrasound at Woman’s Hospital when she was 10 weeks pregnant. She and her boyfriend were excited to welcome their new baby, but soon learned the pregnancy would not go the way they planned.

“It was an abnormal ultrasound, and they noticed the top of the baby’s head was missing and the skull was missing, the top of the skull was missing,” Davis explained.

Davis says her baby was diagnosed with acrania. A rare and fatal condition, where the baby’s skull fails to form in the womb. According to health experts, babies with this condition only survive minutes to hours after birth. But because Davis’s life was not in danger and the baby’s condition does not fall under Louisiana Department of Health’s list of qualifying conditions, she was denied an abortion. Unsure about what to do, Davis is faced with a tough decision. Either carry the baby to term, or cross state lines to get an abortion.

“Florida is the ideally Florida. But then the next closest place would be North Carolina or something,” Davis added.

Without taking a position on abortion, Davis says she thinks state lawmakers need to consider broadening the list of conditions that qualify for an abortion in the state.

“I just want them to consider special circumstances as it relates to abortion...medical problems, like this is one that needs to be in that,” said Davis.

She says she needs to make a decision quick since other states allowing abortion cut-off eligibility at 15 weeks. Davis says her family is sticking close and will support whatever decision she makes. She’s also willing to testify before the legislature to shine more light on this issue. Because of patient privacy laws - a spokeswoman for Women’s Hospital said they could not comment.

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