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18th Jan 2018

Parents allowed to choose baby’s gender under proposed new legislation

The proposed changes were discussed in the Oireachtas Health Committee yesterday.

Orlaith Condon

The proposal was discussed in the Oireachtas Health Committee yesterday.

It was revealed yesterday that the proposed legislation would allow parents to choose the gender of their children but only to prevent the passing on of serious inherited diseases.

Speaking before the Oireachtas Health Committee yesterday, Department of Health chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan outlined plans for the legislation that would allow pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, saying:

“Sex selection would only be permitted where there is a significant risk of a child being born with a serious genetic disease.”

This possible legislation would become the first to regulate fertility treatments but would call for the introduction of a watchdog in the area of fertility treatments.

According to the Irish Independent, the legislation has yet to be drafted, with proposals to go to the Cabinet over the next few months.

It is also being reported that the State will help in funding couples who opt for gender selection.