January 27, 2023

Online Israel News

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Court Stops Genetic Testing for Parents of Mistakenly Planted Embryo

2 min read

On Sunday, the Lod District Court ordered that the State Attorney’s Office choose a guardian for the baby girl who was born after an embryo had been planted mistakenly in the wrong woman.

There is a legal battle ongoing for genetic testing to find the baby girl’s biological parents. The court also said that genetic testing should be stopped until they make a decision.

Testing

The baby has been identified as Sophia in the media and the results of the genetic testing could theoretically lead to her being removed from the custody of the birth mother and her partner.

The couple has refused to give up the child and vowed to fight any attempt of removing the baby because they intend to raise her as their own.

The Rishon Lezion Magistrate’s Court had ruled earlier this month that genetic testing can be carried out for five possible couples and a sixth would only be tested if the five turn out to be negative.

The couple raising Sophia have already been tested and they do not have any genetic connection with her.

They appealed the court’s decision and an initial delay was then ordered for more testing.

Further deliberation

On Sunday, both parties in the dispute agreed that the case would have to go for further deliberation to the family court.

Media reports said that the Assuta Medical Center where the mistaken implantation had occurred would provide the paperwork of the six couples who want to get genetically tested and also share information about the couple raising her.

However, there will not be any testing done until the court hearings come to an end. Assuta had identified 22 couples that could be related to the baby and these six couples are part of the list.

These have the greatest chance of being genetically related to the baby girl.

Other details

The Health Ministry had stopped its efforts of trying to find the biological parents of the girl and this had prompted the couples to seek permission of the court for undergoing testing.

The revelation about the mistakenly plated embryo had resulted in a national firestorm and the baby girl had been born shortly after the discovery, back in October.

A lawsuit was also filed by the couple raising the baby girl against the Assuta Medical Center for NIS 10 million due to the mishap.

The Health Ministry had initially attempted to find the biological parents of the baby, but officials had announced last month that they were going to put a stop to the search.

This was after one couple that had the highest probability of being the baby girl’s parents had been ruled out after a genetic test.

The Health Ministry had also considered closing down Assuta’s IVF unit after the error, but had decided against it.

However, it did demand that it cut down its operations by half, which means it can only perform 5,000 fertility treatments a year instead of the usual 10,000.

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