Dignity Health faces lawsuit over Redding hospital’s refusal to perform contraceptive surgeries

My Patient Rights | Stay Informed | Dignity Health faces lawsuit over Redding hospital’s refusal to perform contraceptive surgeries

Dignity Health faces lawsuit over Redding hospital’s refusal to perform contraceptive surgeries

With a toddler and a new baby on the way, Rachel Miller and her husband felt their family was complete. Miller, with her doctor’s recommendation, asked to have her tubes tied as a permanent form of birth control, a procedure used by millions of women in recent decades.

But she was denied the option at Redding’s Mercy Medical Center, which cited Catholic Church principles opposing abortion and sterilization. Only after the American Civil Liberties Union threatened a lawsuit did the Dignity Health-affiliated hospital relent and allow the contraceptive procedure. That was in late September, immediately after Miller gave birth to her second daughter.

This week, the ACLU is threatening to sue on behalf of two more Redding women who have been denied requests to have tubal ligations immediately after their C-sections, which are scheduled at the same Dignity Health hospital early next year.

Rebecca Chamorro’s due date is Feb. 4, and Lynsie Brushett’s baby is due March 26. Like Miller, both had decided, in consultation with their Redding obstetrician, that a tubal ligation immediately after delivery would be the best solution for their families. Both were turned down.

Brushett, 30, had a difficult first pregnancy. Her son was born 12 weeks prematurely, and she developed severe pre-eclampsia. She said having a second child is all she can safely afford.

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