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Catholic Health calls for informed debate on stem cells

Politicians must seek to be educated beyond the spurious claims made in the press on serious issues such as human cloning and embryonic stem cell research, according to Francis Sullivan, Chief Executive Officer of Catholic Health Australia.

Mr Sullivan said that the fact that that the "appalling failure rate" of attempts to clone species of animals "clearly demonstrates the lack of scientific certainty surrounding these complex issues".

He said: "One thing however, is certain, that human life in all its forms and circumstances deserves respect, protection and dignified treatment."

Stressing the need to be aware of the positive advances in research on adult stem cells, he said that ethical scientific and medical research must be based on "sound principles which not only protect human life, but prevents the active destruction of any stage of human life for any purpose".

"Embryonic stem cell research destroys human life and creates a dangerous precedent where one stage of human life is given priority over another."



29 Apr 2002