Bill would make Catholic hospitals tell patients about options elsewhere

Chicago Tribune

Manya Brachear Pashman

Angela Valavanis, shown with her children Ariana, 5, left, and Dylan, 23 months, and husband Stel, learned minutes before Dylan’s delivery that her hospital would not be able to provide the tubal ligation she had requested months earlier in the event of a cesarean section because the procedure would violate Catholic teachings.

A measure before Illinois lawmakers would require Roman Catholic hospitals to tell patients they can go elsewhere for birth control, certain medical procedures and other health care choices that violate church teachings.

The proposal would amend the state’s Health Care Right of Conscience Act, which generally allows workers and institutions to deny services for religious and ethical reasons. And while it would apply to all hospitals in Illinois, it’s particularly relevant for Catholic hospitals, which handle more than 1 in 4 admissions statewide. . . [Full text]

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