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Christianity Woman dies after being refused abortion in Ireland... told this is a Catholic country...

Discussion in 'Interfaith Dialogues' started by Admin Singh, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. Admin Singh

    Admin Singh
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    A 31-year-old Indian woman died in Ireland from blood poisoning after doctors allegedly refused to perform an abortion stating "this is a Catholic country".

    Irish authorities have launched a probe into the death of Savita Halappanavar, a dentist, who was 17 weeks pregnant and suffering a miscarriage and septicaemia at University Hospital Galway last month, The Irish Times reported today.

    Her husband, Praveen Halappanavar, an engineer at Boston Scientific in Galway, said that she asked several times over a three-day period that the pregnancy be terminated.

    Praveen said having been told she was miscarrying, and after one day in severe pain, Savita asked for a medical termination.

    This was refused, he says, because the foetal heartbeat was still present and they were told, "this is a Catholic country".

    The dead foetus was later removed and Savita was taken to the high dependency unit and then the intensive care unit, where she died of septicaemia on October 28.

    An autopsy carried out two days later found she died of septicaemia "documented ante-mortem" and E.coli ESBL. A hospital spokesperson confirmed the Health Service Executive had begun an investigation while the hospital had also instigated an internal investigation.

    Abortion is illegal in the Republic of Ireland.

    http://www.deccanherald.com/content/291923/indian-woman-dies-being-refused.html
     
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  3. spnadmin

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    This is a scandal. I don't know how to make sense of this story. There must also be more information but she might have gone to England for the procedure (which unmarried teenagers do) There has to be something about Irish law in the instance that is where attention needs to be laid. I cannot even say thank you so distressed I am.
     
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  4. Ishna

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    Hasn't this already been raised on this forum? Maybe I'm getting my forums muddled up.

    There's some info about abortion in Ireland at this Wiki page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abortion_in_the_Republic_of_Ireland

    Whatever the reason, it's disgusting that it happened. She shouldn't have been denied proper medical care. No one has the right to make that decision for her, especially not in the name of 'god'.
     
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  5. Archived_member15

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    I was speechless when I first read about this story back in October.

    The tragic death of this young woman happened on the 28th of October. I remember watching the initial news bulletins with great shock and grief. It is so sad and an utterly unnecessary death. The case caused international outrage that you can read about on this wiki page:


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Savita_Halappanavar


    The United Nations even became involved. Apparently the young lady had went to hospital with a miscarriage and instead of receiving proper medical care to save her life, the hospital denied her the emergency operation. The young woman thus died of septecemia and various other ailments caused by the miscarriage which the hospital refused to treat.

    It is a miscarriage of justice.

    Naturally, it has resulted in calls for a change in Ireland's laws relating to abortions.

    However I want to add, because Ireland is a Catholic country and also because those who denied her treatment did so under the false pretence that they were somehow following Catholic teachings, that the Catholic Church permits woman to receive the necessary operation to save their lives in cases in which her life is mortally threatened. We do not regard this as the intentional killing of a foetus (abortion) but a necessary operation to save the mother, even if the foetus dies:



    This young woman was denied this human right to an operation which would have saved her life.

    I am totally ashamed that my religion was used to justify the refusal to treat this young woman by the hospital, an outragrous abuse of human rights which led to her untimely death.

    I cannot understand why the hospital refused to treat this poor young woman on the alleged basis of a catholic teaching which does not exist. Under Catholic doctrine, this young woman should have received the operation spoken of by Pope Pius XII, and still be alive right now.

    Ashamed.
     
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  6. Ishna

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    Vouthon ji

    Thanks for the clarification from the Pope on the Catholic rulings about abortion.

    I'm no doctor, but imagine the mother's death by septecemia probably wasn't foreseeable. In that case, where doctors may have thought her body would eliminate the miscarriage naturally as is usually the way, would they have been legally able to interfere? If they presumed no danger to the mother's life, and the feotus was dying anyway, could they have helped her?

    If the law was kept secular for all there wouldn't be complications such as these, but that's probably a separate thread.
     
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  7. Archived_member15

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    Thanks for your enlightening reply sister Ishna ji.

    It is difficult to comment at the moment, given that the investigation surrounding her death and the doctor's apparent refusal of treatment is still in process. Until the results have been confirmed, we can only speculate as to the seemingly incomprehensible judgement of the hospital staff.

    It may be that they acted in good faith, not believing that the young woman was in any grave danger, however it would appear from the evidence in the articles that this was no normal miscarriage, but an extreme situation that trained medical staff might have picked up on.

    The information given in the articles is extremely confusing though, since they say she suffered a miscarriage, yet say that she was denied an abortion by the hospital on the grounds that her foetus still had a heartbeat and that "it was a Catholic country".

    Since an abortion is not needed for a typical miscarriage, as you correctly describe, I can only surmise that it could not have been a normal miscarriage and that apparently this one needed an operation to remove the foetus.

    All we are told is that she faced severe complications, miscarried and died of septecemia. How the abortion fits into this I do not currently understand.

    It appears that she was refused the termination of an already miscarried pregnancy, a procedure that might have saved her life. Is this possible? Its the impression I get from the articles. I do not understand the medical side of this, since I too am not a doctor, but if this is proven to be true then it truly is a serious failure of duty on the part of the hospital staff.
     
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  8. Archived_member15

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    I just read this from an article in the Telegraph dated today, December 18th:

    Can you comment on this Ishna ji and perhaps shine some light ie how a termination was necessary for her miscarriaging to save her life? It is extremely confusing to me.
     
  9. Luckysingh

    Luckysingh Canada
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    The investigation will need to prove that the doctors decision was based on the unforseeable circumstances.

    Personally, I think that it has been blown out of proportion by the media!

    Firstly, we need to remember that when a women carrying a baby is admitted into the hospital, then the health and welfare of BOTH the foetus and mother are given equal regards.
    The medical staffs concern would be to save BOTH mother and baby when any complication arises.
    There is an an investigation in to this case and I would not agree with the headline that the death occured because she was denied an abortion OR that an abortion could have saved her.- This headline and statement has to be proven by the investigation. - Therefore, I wouldn't fall for it before the conclusion and my stance is clearly neutral on the matter.

    Septicaemia or blood poisonng is A RISK throughout pregnancy and it is a popular complication of abortion. Most deaths that occur after abortion are usually due to blood poisoning, so we have to remember that the risk of septicaemia is higher in abortion.

    I would think that the doctors would have been going by the laws of the nation and not their own religous views in a case like this.
    I'm sure that if they had predicted a loss of life with either the mother or child, then they would have tried their best to save the other.
    In this case, there were signs of miscarrying as I believe. These would have been discharge of blood, amniotic fluid and some dilation. The medical team has set parameters that indicate if these signs are in the high risk zone or not.- This is what they would base their decisions on rightfully and legally.
    If the investigation proves that some of these were ignored, then we have a case.
    If at any stage they had suspected a high risk to the mother of keeping the foetus inside, then they would have aborted it.- This is what the argument is !
    Could an abortion have saved her life ?
    We can't really say because she still could have had a high risk of septicaemia after the abortion.

    The investigation will look into the ethical decisions made by following the medical criteria and NOT the catholic laws.
    The comment of the foetus heart beating is on the rightful grounds that the baby is healthy and does not need aborting. It doesn't mean that we need to let it's heart beat even if the mother is being put at risk.

    There are also many cases of pregnancies being induced very early in order to save BOTH the baby and mother. If it were known that either were at risk and inducing could save them, then this is rightfully carried out.

    Meanwhile, we will have to wait for the investigation, bearing in mind that cases of unlawful medical decisions or misconduct in Ireland are very very low compared to UK.
    A higher percentage of medical personell are in very good standing.
     
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  10. spnadmin

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    Tonight there was a very brief news clip on CNN about this. The Irish Parliament is vowing to re-write the law, not to change it, but to clarify what it was intended to say. The speaker was extremely emotional about the topic, claimed that the law had been misapplied. Now either that was a CYA performance, or the law is so intricate that doctors are in fear of taking a wrong step. Earlier commets on this thread seem to be pointing in that second direction. If I can find something on the CNN web site that corresponds to the tv coverage I will post it.
     
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  11. spnadmin

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    OK Here it is.

    Ireland to clarify law on abortion when mother's life is at risk
    By Nic Robertson and Laura Smith-Spark, CNN
    updated 3:59 PM EST, Tue December 18, 2012

    You can also see news video at this link http://www.cnn.com/2012/12/18/world/europe/ireland-abortion/index.html?hpt=hp_t3

    (CNN) -- Ireland's government is to introduce a new law and regulations to clarify that abortions are permissible when the life -- but not health -- of the mother is at risk, Minister of Health James Reilly announced Tuesday.

    The decision, made in a Cabinet meeting Tuesday, follows controversy over the death of Savita Halappanavar from blood poisoning seven weeks ago.

    The government is acting on a report from an expert group on abortion, commissioned after a judgment by the European Court of Human Rights.

    It is likely to be several months before the proposed legislation, which could prove divisive in the majority Catholic nation, is finalized.

    Reilly said that he was aware of the strength of feeling around the issue of abortion, but that the government had a duty to ensure the safety of pregnant women in Ireland.

    "For that purpose, we will clarify in legislation and regulation what is available by way of treatment to a woman when a pregnancy gives rise to a threat to a woman's life," he said in a statement.

    "We will also clarify what is legal for the professionals who must provide that care while at all times taking full account of the equal right to life of the unborn child."
    The death of Halappanavar, an Indian-born dentist who had moved to Ireland, prompted outrage among many there and overseas.

    Her husband, Praveen Halappanavar, says his wife was advised that her unborn baby would probably die. In extreme pain, she asked for the abortion but was told that Ireland is a Catholic country and an abortion could not be done while the fetus was alive.

    Three days after the request for a termination was made, the fetus died and was removed. Four days later, on October 28, Savita Halappanavar died.

    Inquiries were set up by Irish authorities after the 31-year-old's death, including one by the Health Service Executive, but none has yet reported back.

    Praveen Halappanavar has demanded a full public inquiry but must wait to see what emerges from the other inquiries, his lawyer Gerard O'Donnell said.

    He said his client had not yet commented on the government's announcement on new abortion legislation but predicted that the devil would be in the details of what is proposed.

    O'Donnell said that based on the time he has spent with Halappanavar, his client "would not want this to happen to anyone else again, albeit it has come too late for Savita."

    One of Halappanavar's principal motivations through this difficult time has been "to make sure nothing like this happens again," O'Donnell added.

    Halappanavar has gone back to work but has not been able to return to the home he shared with his wife of several years, the lawyer said.

    The proposed changes would bring the country's laws in line with a 1992 Irish Supreme Court ruling that established a woman's right to abortion when her life is at risk, including by suicide.
     
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  12. Luckysingh

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    What is so shocking is the problems encountered on both sides of the spectrum.
    We have countries where it is illegal and then we have countries where it is not.

    Most places, states or provinces have set and safe time limits where it is kept legal.
    Mostly first trimester and some may allow upto 20 weeks or 24 weeks.
    However, over here in BC there doesn't seem to be any strict limits.
    I personally know of some medical staff that find it so distressing that the law is so relaxed that they are campaigning for limits to be placed.

    For a doctor to terminate in the 1st trimester is no big deal because it is mainly tissue that is being aborted BUT when they are faced with dealing with over 20 weeks then it becomes a more complicated and senstive issue - The foetus or baby is so well formed with limbs and head that there is no doubt it feels pain but the doctors carrying out this legal operation find it just as painful, inhumane and cruel that one student recently gave up all his hopes on the profession!!

    These doctors want some limitations placed on this brutal activity that they are obliged to proceed with because of the very relaxed laws.

    Another shocker of news for some is the next thing that you hear this doctors comlaining about-
    - As standard procedure before an abortion the patient must be interviewed by a counseller/psychologist to determine and reassure that the person is medically and mentally suitable for such a procedure.
    This involves asking the reason for the abortion- and most of them are usually because of financial and parenthood restrictions along with a little woopsie!

    Very sadly, it's no surprise that the majority of indian or punjabi women that are there tell them that it is NOT their choice. They claim that their punjabi mother in law will kill them or destroy their marriage if her son has another baby girl !
    There are many agencies and companies that will determine the sex of your baby from scans and the punjabis abuse this to the MAX.
    If the scan shows a female, then they have no choice but to abort and then try again.
    Most of these women or young wives are usually so traumatised by this cultural demand by the oldies that they end up on some serious depression issues.

    You only have to walk around some elementary schools in Surrey to see the high ratios of punjabi boys and toddlers to girls to prove this fact.

    On one end we have the problems of very strict abortion laws and then on the other we have the very relaxed!!
    - I find it very sad that we live life this way.
     
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