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'If my baby would only get one kiss, I wanted to give it to her'

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Jennifer Kehoe of Naas, Co Kildare, of the One Day More support group outside Leinster House yesterday. Photo: Tom Burke

Jennifer Kehoe of Naas, Co Kildare, of the One Day More support group outside Leinster House yesterday. Photo: Tom Burke

Jennifer Kehoe of Naas, Co Kildare, of the One Day More support group outside Leinster House yesterday. Photo: Tom Burke

In 2009, Jennifer Kehoe was told her baby had little chance of surviving outside the womb.

The tiny little girl had a hole in her heart, the cerebellum in her still-developing brain was diminished and there were other complications.

Today, five-year-old Louise Kehoe "is in school, is happy and loving life".

"She will need to be monitored for the rest of her life, but that's okay," Jennifer explains.

Jennifer is part of the 'One Day More' campaign group, who say the current debate around fatal foetal abnormalities has "exclusively focused on abortion" at the expense of other alternative care options.

"The hardest part for us was the way we were effectively told 'people in this situation go to England and have an abortion'.

"There was no effort to outline the options available to us by doctors. I thought, 'if my baby would only get one kiss in her life, I wanted to be there to give it to her'," Jennifer said.

The group met with TDs to outline other care options including Perinatal Hospice Care, which provides a variety of services to babies with life-limiting conditions and their families.

"Parents need to know there are alternatives where their babies will be loved and cared for unconditionally," Jennifer added.

 

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