Matt's Crow Country: Selfish parents ruin children's lives

THE selfishness of people in our world never ceases to amaze me. Last week saw the death of Maria del Carmen Bousada. She achieved notoriety in 2006 when, at the age of 66, she gave birth to twins. This gave her the dubious title of being the world s olde

THE selfishness of people in our world never ceases to amaze me.

Last week saw the death of Maria del Carmen Bousada. She achieved notoriety in 2006 when, at the age of 66, she gave birth to twins. This gave her the dubious title of being the world's oldest mother.

Her sad death, caused by cancer, means the two children, Christian and Pau, are now orphans, as Miss Bousada was a single mother who undertook fertility treatment and IVF to become pregnant in the first place.

To me it is shocking that doctors should allow someone of her age to give birth artificially, especially as she has no family to provide a safety net for the twins in these awful circumstances. It is never ideal to bring youngsters up in a one-parent household, let alone one with a mother who is at an age where she should be looking after grandchildren.


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Of course I feel for people who can't have children through natural means, but more stringent controls must be exercised at fertility clinics, otherwise we are going to have more and more tragic cases like this.

In the end, it will always be the children who end up suffering because of the irresponsible decisions made by a parent.

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I've noticed a couple of good contenders for this weeks "stating the bleeding obvious" award.

And both come courtesy of the good old NHS.

The first was Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge, which has spent thousands of pounds on a survey to discover why staff are flouting an on-site smoking ban. The results were that, surprise surprise, hospital workers are continuing to have a sly puff because smoking is addictive.

Who would have thought it? Next they'll be telling us that cigarettes can cause health problems or something.

Then we have Hertfordshire NHS and their cutting edge Swine Flu advice.

"The best thing you can do is stay at home, rest, drink plenty of fluids and take over-the-counter flu remedies such as paracetamol to help relieve the symptoms," said Jane Halpin, Director of Public Health at NHS North, East, and West Hertfordshire.

"People who do develop symptoms such as a sudden fever, cough, a headache, sore throat, tiredness, aching muscles, sneezing, runny nose or loss of appetite may have swine flu."

Lucky we've got these professionals looking after us, I'm sure nobody would have worked that out for themselves!

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