Catholic hospital says it was 'morally wrong' to argue fetus is not a person
By CNN Staff
updated 8:51 PM EST, Mon February 4, 2013
Catholic hospital flips on fetus death
Catholic hospital reverses stance in case of Lori Stodghill, who died there
Her husband sued the hospital on behalf of his wife and their unborn twins
Attorneys for the hospital argued in court that a fetus is not a person
(CNN) -- A Catholic hospital in hot water for
claiming in a Colorado court that a fetus is not a person backtracked on
Monday, saying it was "morally wrong" to make the argument while
defending itself in a wrongful death lawsuit.
The flip-flop concerns
the case of Lori Stodghill. She was 28 weeks pregnant with twins when
she went to the emergency room of St. Thomas More Hospital in Canon
City, Colorado, vomiting and short of breath.
She went into cardiac arrest in the lobby and died. That was New Year's Day 2006.
Her husband, Jeremy
Stodghill, sued the hospital and its owner, Catholic Health Initiatives,
for the wrongful deaths of his wife and their unborn sons.
CO mom fights for law protecting fetuses
Case fuels debate over when life begins
Given the Catholic
Church's belief that life begins at conception, defense attorneys for
the hospital and doctors then entered an unusual argument.
They said that under state law, an embryo is not person until it is born alive.
The claim attracted widespread attention and criticism, which apparently forced the about-face.
"In the discussion with
the Church leaders, CHI representatives acknowledged that it was morally
wrong for attorneys representing St. Thomas More Hospital to cite the
state's Wrongful Death Act in defense of this lawsuit. That law does not
consider fetuses to be persons, which directly contradicts the moral
teachings of the Church," Catholic Health Initiatives said in a
It promised that attorneys for the hospital would not cite the Wrongful Death Act in any future hearings.
Stodghill has petitioned the Colorado Supreme Court to hear his case.
The state's bishops similarly released a statement, expressing support for CHI and for the Stodghill family.
"We join CHI in
affirming the fundamental truth that human life, human dignity and human
rights begin at conception. No law can ever mitigate God-given human
rights," they said. "Each human life is a sacred gift, created as a
unique and unrepeatable expression of God's love. Life is given by God,
and the right to life is a fundamental good, without which no other
rights can be enjoyed."
I guess they didn't like the public backlash...their hypocrisy was a bit ridiculous...now the backpedaling is just a wee bit too obvious...if it was so 'morally wrong', why did they use the defense in the first place?
I can't remember exactly how far along she was, but she was far enough that they could have done a c-section and the babies could have been saved. The doctors did not even attempt to do so, and the father sued based on this.
Why is he suing in the first place? She went in to cardiac arrest in the ER waiting room but how long was she waiting or was it sudden?