Hot on the heels of Bishop Thomas Olmstead stripping St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix of its affiliation with the Roman Catholic diocese after it terminated a pregnancy to save the life of the mother, the National Women's Law Center has released a report on entitled Below the Radar: Health Care Providers' Religious Refusals Can Endanger Women's Lives and Health. The study deals with certain religiously affiliated hospitals placing women’s health and lives at risk by restricting doctors’ ability to provide the best medical care to pregnant women experiencing miscarriages and ectopic pregnancies.
The report paints a chilling picture of women with doomed ectopic pregnancies or suffering miscarriages who are not offered the full spectrum of medically appropriate treatment options because they have gone to a hospital whose religious affiliation conflicts with the provision of those options. It also contains a legal analysis commissioned from The Ibis Reproductive Health, a clinical and social science research organization, of the implications of this sickening trend titled Assessing Hospital Policies & Practices Regarding Ectopic Pregnancies & Miscarriage Management.
Not to float any stereotypes here, but we're not talking about pregnant 20-somethings who are avoiding carrying a baby to keep their boobs perky for spring break. These are women who are in the process of miscarrying or suffering through ectopic pregnancies being forced to wait unnecessarily on certain criteria, ie, complete disappearance of fetal heartbeat, in order to receive the care they need. Tubal ruptures, internal bleeding, severe fever, any number of consequences for this lapse of medical care, all for what?
Read the entire report. Legal analysis here.