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State may be asked to investigate hospital denying sterilization procedure to woman

Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio

State hospital regulators may be asked to investigate a Catholic hospital’s decision not to allow a doctor to perform a sterilization procedure on a seriously ill pregnant woman.

Genesys Regional Medical Center in Grand Blanc insists it is following “the ethical and religious directives of the (Catholic) Church” by denying the woman a tubal ligation. 

Jessica Mann’s scheduled to undergo a C-Section next month. It will be her third child. Mann also would like the child to be her last. 

Jessica Mann has a brain tumor. Her doctor believes the tumor would make another pregnancy potentially fatal. 

Mann’s doctor wants to perform a tubal ligation after she delivers the baby by C-section next month. But citing the hospital’s internal policy, officials at Genesys have denied the request.  

The ACLU of Michigan has asked the hospital to reconsider. 

ACLU attorney Brooke Tucker says, unless the hospital relents, they may ask state licensing and civil rights agencies to investigate. 

“You can’t deny service to an individual simply because you don’t like them and you don’t like what they want,” says Tucker.

Tucker says state regulators can fine the hospital and take other steps to compel hospital officials to reverse their decision in the Mann case.

“(State regulators can) insure that future patients are not harmed in the same way Mrs. Mann has been harmed,” says Tucker.  

Jessica Mann says “Decisions about my care should be between me and my doctor – Catholic bishops have no place in that equation.”

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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