Louisville hospital merger probably means poor women won’t get their tubes tied at University Hospital any more

Women who deliver through Caesarean sections at the University of Louisville Hospital may no longer be able to get their fallopian tubes tied at the same time, Patrick Howington of the The Courier-Journal reports. This rule may be one of many the hospital plans to adopt if the proposed merger with Catholic Health Initiatives, parent company of Lexington-based St. Joseph Health System, goes through.

The hospital has agreed to honor the Roman Catholic Church’s rules against sterilization as a part of the merger agreement. University “President James Ramsey said reproductive procedures that can’t be done at University Hospital will be performed at U of L’s outpatient center on Chestnut Street, which isn’t part of the merger,” Howington writes. This would require an additional surgery for women seeking tubal ligations since the outpatient center does not deliver babies. “That’s really inappropriate,” said Dr. Marcello Pietrantoni, a Louisville obstetrician who specializes in high-risk pregnancies. “You’re going through a second procedure, and the risks of complications . . . are doubled.” (Read more)

Medical risks and additional costs are not the only concerns Louisville residents and neighbors have about the proposed merger. An editorial in today’s Courier-Journal reminds readers of the hospital’s missions to provide care for indigents in the city and train doctors, and questions the level of care from a public hospital guided by a religious organization. To read the editorial, click here.

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