A woman filed a complaint against a Toronto hospital last year after it refused to abort one of her healthy unborn twins at her request, the National Post reported.
The 45-year-old Ottawa mother was warned that, at her age, carrying twins would increase the risk of miscarriage, the report states. She was referred to Mount Sinai Hospital for a “selective reduction,” an abortion for just one of her babies.
The hospital would not perform the abortion, according to her complaint. The doctors explained that they would only do the procedure in the case of triplets or more, or if one of the twins had a disability, according to the report. They also told her that she could go to the United States for the abortion.
The Jewish hospital later explained that the abortion would contradict the “consciences of the clinicians.”
Here is more from the complaint:
In May 2015, the applicant was pregnant with twins following in vitro fertilization (IVF). The applicant decided that she did not want to have twins and wished to reduce the pregnancy to one fetus. Her obstetrical specialist advised her that this was a complex procedure that was not generally performed.
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On May 6, 2015, her treating specialist wrote to an obstetrician colleague at Mount Sinai Hospital to see if that hospital would be able to perform the procedure. The Mount Sinai physician advised that the respondent hospital would not be able to perform the procedure because the circumstances did not fit with the hospital’s policy regarding fetal reduction surgery.
On May 8, 2015, the applicant filed this Application, alleging discrimination by the respondent because of sex and family status.
Ultimately, the applicant had the procedure done at another hospital and went on to give birth to one baby.
The woman, identified as C.V., described her response to the incident in an interview: “I was shocked, I was honestly disgusted and I felt judged. It was very much a judgmental and ill-thought and essentially disrespectful reaction … I was literally in disbelief.”
C.V. filed a complaint to the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal “alleging discrimination on the basis of sex and family status,” the complaint states.
After the complaint was filed, Mount Sinai hospital referred her to the Toronto’s Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, where they aborted one of her twins.
On July 18, tribunal member Brian Cook ruled that the hospital’s decision was not discriminatory, but instead medically-based, according to the report.
“A doctor is not required to perform a procedure that the doctor believes is not medically appropriate,” Cook wrote in his judgment.
National organizer for the Campaign Life Coalition Mary Ellen Douglas told LifeSite, “This case points out how little respect there is for life of any kind in the womb.
“Choosing first of all to have a baby by in vitro, secondly, to decide, well, gee, I’d like this one and not that one … and I don’t want anybody to tell me there’s anything the matter with doing this.”
Douglas continued: “What’s she going to say to that child that survives? This is how badly we have degenerated in terms of any kind morality in regard to the womb.”