NSS Makes Change Happen on the MOD Website
By Richard K. Olsen, founder and Executive Director of The National Stillbirth Society

Friends and Family of Our Missing Angels,

In February we discovered that the Stillbirth page on the MOD website referred to stillborn babies only as "fetuses". The National Stillbirth Society protested and asked MOD to revise their website. They changed one reference and left the rest, insisting their site was "medically accurate", that the unborn are "fetuses". The even referred to the born still as "fetuses".

We wrote to everyone at MOD, from the President on down. We set an April 1st deadline, after which we promised we would escalate the conflict. Some cautioned NSS not to push too hard; we felt there was nothing to lose. It's not as though they are spending money on stillbirth research that they might discontinue. Nor do they consider stillbirth to be a birth defect, and yet - isn't fetal death the ultimate birth defect? That needs to be our next campaign; to get stillbirth recognized as a birth defect, making it eligible for research funding.

Tonight we received a congratulatory e-mail from the Illinois State Coordinator for NSS, praising us for the MOD victory! We jumped onto the March of Dimes and here's what we found. A revised Stillbirth page without a single reference to "fetus"!

Our babies have been recognized as babies. Our mother's sacrifices have been validated. Their love has been acknowledged. What had been a truly obscene web page is now a sensitive and compassionate page.

Because they have not been involved in stillbirth issues MOD was as ignorant of the syndrome and the impact it has on parents as was I when Camille died. I was just a few notches ahead of them on the learning curve. But learn they did. Thank you to all who helped in this battle, and especially to Jaye Zessar, grandmother of Zachary, who was invaluable in bringing MOD to the point where they began to understand why we who have lost babies regard references to them as fetuses to be so offensive.

STOP. Before you leave this paragraph click on the e-mail link to Ms. Jennifer Howse, President of March of Dimes, and thank her for making the change. Send your thank you to JHowse@marchofdimes.com. A simple thank you will do. A personal experience to explain why the change is important to you would be even better. But please, for our babies, do not leave this page without sending her an e-mail. Because all the children matter!

Thank you.

Author Biography
Richard Olsen is a stillbirth father married to Sharon Arnold, mother of Camille Rayana Olsen, stillborn on August 17, 2000 at full term. Their memorial website is at www.camilleolsen.com. Richard is the founder and Executive Director of both The National Stillbirth Society and The Missing Angel Foundation. He lives and works in Phoenix Arizona as a real estate developer. His e-mail address is rko@cox.net.

National Stillbirth Society
Post Office Box 10273, Phoenix, AZ 85064
Tel: 1-800-611-SADS www.stillnomore.org

Loss  | Vashon | Services | Art | Poetry | Store | Contact

© 1999 KotaPress All rights reserved.  ISSN 1534-1410 www.KotaPress.com
Please direct comments regarding this web site to webmaster@KotaPress.com