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National Health Service Changes Mind about London Treatment

August 21, 1996

LONDON (AP) _ A British woman expecting eight babies will receive the government’s help for expensive medical treatment by a London specialist, even though he claims she ignores his advice.

Dr. Kypros Nicolaides, a specialist in multiple births at King’s College Hospital in London, said he will continue to treat Mandy Allwood, 31, even though he disagrees with her decision to give birth to all eight.

Other women facing multiple births often abort some fetuses to improve the chances of the others.

``She’s extremely optimistic, despite my repeated attempts to reduce that optimism and to ensure that she is aware that there is an extremely high chance that she will end up with no babies at all,″ Nicolaides said.

He said last week that Allwood had agreed to stop giving interviews about her high-risk pregnancy. On Sunday, however, the tabloid News of the World had five pages of stories based on fresh interviews with Allwood _ plus sonogram images of all eight fetuses on the front page.

``At the end I had to decide whether I could cope and I have decided that the best interests of my patient dictated that I continue to look after her,″ Nicolaides said in an interview Tuesday on Sky News, a satellite TV channel.

The News of the World has a contract with Allwood for her story, and says it will pay her a bonus for each baby she delivers.

But the tabloid has refused to cover what’s expected to be a $775,000 medical bill in London.

The state-run health authority at first refused to pay the costs unless Allwood returned to her hometown of Birmingham.

Health administrators changed their minds on Tuesday, however, since Allwood is now living in London.

Allwood conceived the eight fetuses as a result of fertility treatment.

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