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Octuplets doc investigated for ethics

February 10, 2009 1:22:54 PM PST
The fertility doctor who treated the unidentified mother of newborn octuplets is now under investigation.Two medical organizations are investigating. The doctor is getting bombarded with criticism, but not from his famous patient.

Pursued by cameras and now under growing scrutiny by the medical community, Dr. Michael Kamrava is now under investigation by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. He implanted six embryos in Nadya Suleman -- the guidelines dictate no more than three embryos.

"The medical community is in an uproar because they are ethical guidelines and there's procedures and there's policies, but there's not a state law or a federal law that mandates the number of embryos that can be inserted in a woman," said Joanne Killeen, Suleman's publicist.

Putting in more embryos did not yield more pregnancies for Dr. Kamrava. According to federal records, he had one of the worst success rates in the nation. The Centers for Disease Control report that he performed 20 procedures on women younger than 35 in 2006. Only two women gave birth. One was Suleman with twins.

Now with 14 children, there are questions about her mothering skills.

"The facts are, she's a fabulous mom," said Jacqueline Chatfield, Merry Poppins nanny service.

Chatfield manages the nannies Suleman has hired over the last two years. She says the feedback has been so positive about the mother of 14, Chatfield is offering one year of free service.

"Well, you have to look at it this way," said Chatfield. "The babies are here, the six children are here, they're 14 beautiful kids, it's about the kids now, and you've got to make sure they're safe and taken care of."

Suleman will need help paying bills, though she had to pay for her own fertility treatments. Medical treatment for the octuplets may be shouldered by California taxpayers.

The L.A. Times reports that Kaiser Permanente has requested reimbursement for MediCal.

Meantime, Suleman denies getting welfare benefits, but she does get government help, food stamps as well as federal funds for three of her children who have special needs.

"It's a government assistance program, but she says she's not on welfare," said publicist Killeen. "These are resources that are available to help women in positions like her."

Suleman had to stay in the hospital for eight weeks before she had the octuplets. Now we are told she's reunited with her six older children in a secret place. No word yet on when she will be coming home.


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