The welfare of the child

Health Care Anal. 2000;8(1):27-34. doi: 10.1023/A:1009430326447.


The interests or welfare of the child are rightly central to any discussion of the ethics of reproduction. The problematic nature of this legitimate concern is seldom, if ever, noticed or if it is, it is misunderstood. A prominent example of this sort of misunderstanding occurs in the Department of Health's recent and important 'Surrogacy Review' chaired by Margaret Brazier (The Brazier Report) and the same misunderstanding makes nonsense of at least one provision of the Human Fertilization and Embryology Act 1990. (The HFE Act). This paper explores and hopefully resolves this misunderstanding and sets out the ways in which the idea of the interests of the child can legitimately function in bioethics.

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child Welfare / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Commerce / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Ethics, Medical
  • Government Regulation*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Surrogate Mothers / legislation & jurisprudence*