"Bodies of 21 infants, foetuses dumped in China river - Tue, Mar 30, 2010 AFP
BEIJING - Staff at a hospital in eastern China have been suspended after the bodies of at least 21 infants and foetuses were found discarded in a river, state media reported on Tuesday.
At least eight bodies had tags indicating they were from the hospital of Jining Medical University in Shandong province, Xinhua news agency reported.
Authorities were quoted by the Beijing News saying the corpses could have been those of aborted foetuses or babies who had died of illness. They were found on the outskirts of the city of Jining.
Abortion is common in China, where at least 13m births are terminated due to the so-called 'One-Child Policy' which limit most urban couple to 1 child. Reports of poor treatment of patients - both living and dead - by the underfunded hospitals are not uncommon!!"
I heard about this on the radio this evening where driving and now found the morbid headlines in the AsiaOne.com site. This will give the anti-abortion folks and the human right activists plenty of ammunition to shoot at the Chinese authority and the people involved with this sickening treatment of the dead babies and foetuses.
Lessons for me are:
1. the many horror stories about how badly a patient can be treated in the Chinese hospitals of old perhaps are still very real for some patients in some hospital! Jining Medical University Hospital cannot be a low level hospital as it is the capital of Shandong Province! It is very very shocking and send shudders and chill down your spine when you imagined you could be seeking treatment in this hospital if you were in China!!;
2. it is a grim fact and reality that abortion is on a scale unimaginable by a tiny country like Singapore whose whole population just numbered 4.5m, and its citizens are already complaining we have too many people on too small a land, the 13m abortions simply overwhelmed us. Can you right this supposedly wrong if you are an outsider, an outside anti-abortion activists? I think not as the reasons for the abortion by the parents maybe something you can never comprehend. Even if you can comprehend, you will not be able to begin to influence the root causes for these reasons UNLESS the local themselves see the same issues as you do and want to change!!;
3. the staff who discarded these bodies and foetuses must be brought to task for acting in such an inhuman and disrespectful manner. At the same time, if this is the standard operating procedure of the hospital concerned, the administration and the management must be answerable as well. Excuses of insufficient resources, unable to contact the relatives of the dead, etc will not cut it. It is really a Chinese national disgrace that such an act had happened. It is just another incident where those who don't understand China will readily log down as: China is still a very primitive country with a lot of work to be done to bring it anywhere near the common world standard of medical care for its people.
The talk of China being a superpower with lots of wealth ring empty when such occurrences could not had happened in an economically weakened USA or UK!