National News

Jun 1, 2014 1:56 AM by Elizabeth Cohen, Senior Medical Correspondent

Parents ask: Why did my baby die?

CNN) -- Erin and William Petersen almost didn't get the ultrasound. You don't really need it, the doctor told them, but come on in if you like and have a look at your baby.
They watched excitedly as the baby, just 12 weeks old, moved its hand across the screen. It looked like a wave hello to Mommy and Daddy.

Excuse me, the technician said as she put down the ultrasound wand and headed toward the door.

"Is everything OK?" the Petersens asked.
"No," the technician answered and walked out of the room.

Sky-high rate of a birth defect

Nearly two years after the state of Washington was alerted to a possible cluster of babies born with severe birth defects, experts are speaking out, criticizing the state health department for not doing enough to save babies' lives.

For four years in a row, from 2010 through 2013, the rate of babies born with a brain defect called anencephaly -- a type of neural tube defect -- in one rural area of Washington has been more than four times the national rate. The defect is always fatal.




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