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Decision-making at the border of viability: determining the best interests of extremely preterm infants

Abstract

This paper proposes and employs a framework for determining whether life-saving treatment at birth is in the best interests of extremely preterm infants, given uncertainty about the outcome of such a choice. It argues that given relevant data and plausible assumptions about the well-being of babies with various outcomes, it is typically in the best interests of even the youngest preterm infants—those born at 22 weeks gestational age—to receive life-saving treatment at birth.

  • foetal viability
  • neonatology
  • newborns and minors
  • perinatal morbidity
  • perinatal mortality
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