Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyers: Denied Treatment for Emergency Miscarriages

According to a recent study, OB-GYNs working in Catholic-owned hospitals are often prohibited from performing certain medical procedures that are potentially life saving for women who are experiencing an emergency miscarriage.

For eight years, Dr. Lori Freeman has been studying the relationship between the abortion training obstetrician-gynecologists receive during residency and the incidence of medical malpractice at Catholic hospitals. Her study revealed that doctors’ hands are often tied because members of the hospitals’ ethics committees’ interpretation of the church’s “Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services” often prevent them from performing life-saving, emergency abortions, even if the baby is not expected to survive.

According to Freeman, the problem is that different Catholic hospitals interpret the directives in various ways in terms of when they may terminate a pregnancy. For example, an OB-GYN in one hospital was told to wait until the patient was near death before ending the pregnancy. Another Catholic hospital transferred a patient to a secular hospital, which resulted in the patient going into septic shock and making her blood hemorrhage.

ACLU Versus the Catholic Church

In October of 2015, the ACLU sued the Catholic Hospital System for refusing to provide the necessary emergency medical treatment needed in order to stabilize the mother in at least five separate instances. The women suffered preterm, premature rupture of membranes, which occurs when the amniotic sac tears, leaving no fluid protecting the unborn child. Under these circumstances, the fetus cannot survive, and the mother is at risk for infection, as well as other serious, sometimes fatal, complications,

The number of Catholic-affiliated hospitals has increased by 22 percent since 2001 as a result of the mergers and acquisitions in the healthcare industry. The ACLU has initiated a multi-pronged legal and legislative campaign addressing cases like this and the increasing number of Catholic hospitals across the country. Advocates have also taken note of Freeman’s research and recognize that more attention needs to be paid to the issue in order to explore options from a legal and advocacy perspective.

Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Advocate for Victims of Medical Malpractice

If you or a loved one has been the victim of medical negligence, contact the Baltimore medical malpractice lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. We will provide you with the skilled, aggressive defense you need during this difficult time, and ensure that your rights are protected at all times. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.

Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent injured accident victims and their families throughout Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Parkville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.