Michigan Woman Sues Catholic Bishops for Negligence After Miscarriage
A Michigan woman is suing the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), claiming the bishops’ anti-choice directives are negligently affecting the medical care delivered at Catholic-owned and -sponsored hospitals.
Filed by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the lawsuit, believed to be the first of its kind, argues that patients’ lives are put at risk by unnecessarily denying pregnant women in crisis proper medical care.
In 2010, a then-18 weeks pregnant Tamesha Means showed up at Mercy Health Partners in Muskegon, Michigan, in the middle of having a miscarriage. Her water had broken and she was experiencing severe cramping. Mercy Health, a Catholic-sponsored facility, told Means there was nothing it could do for her and sent her home. Means came back the next day, this time in more pain and bleeding and was again told the course of action was to wait and see.
It wasn’t until Means, a mother of three, returned to Mercy Health a third time, this time suffering from a significant infection as her miscarriage persisted untreated. In response, the hospital gave Means some aspirin to treat her fever and prepared to send her home. Before the hospital discharged Means for a third time, she started to deliver. It wasn’t until then that the hospital decided to admit Means and to treat her condition. Means eventually delivered a baby who died within hours of birth.