Oration from 2002

Oration Title:

Adoption and Foster Care: Is It For You?


Harvey G. Clermont, M.D.

Abstract of Oration:

Dr. Clermont opens his address with statistics of adoption in America. He analyzes the "present family structure in the USA," an ever-increasing portion of which is not congruent with the "traditional" family concept. He describes the unique situation faced by adoptive families. These parents deal with the reality that the child is not biologically theirs, and that fact sometimes makes it more difficult to love the child. Adopted children share their love "with the birth parents, openly or tacitly."

Clermont presents the results of a survey he administered to over 600 members of the Worcester District Medical Society. In general the physicians responded favorably toward the various aspects of adoption. He does conclude, though, that physicians need more training in dealing with patients from adoptive families. Also, access to birth parent medical histories should be made available for better quality care to adoptees and medical history-taking practices should be modified to address the situation of adoptive families.

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