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in brief: pregnant woman is finally taken off life support

Image: Wikimedia Commons

Image: Wikimedia Commons

In Fort Worth, Texas, the battle between life and death has finally come to an end. For the family of Marlise Munoz, a young pregnant woman who has been kept on life support despite her wishes to be taken off has finally been given what she and her family asked her. On Friday, a Texas judge ordered the hospital she was staying in to pull the plug, two months after she was admitted to the hospital and pronounced brain-dead.

She was kept on life support because Texas law prohibits abortion and so the hospital forced the family to abide to that law because of her unborn child. For weeks and weeks, the story made headlines because it raised huge questions about whether or not a patient should be kept on life support for the sake of a foetus.

The judge, R.H. Wallace, has given the hospital until 5pm on Monday to remove the ventilator. The case for Mrs. Munoz and the unborn child showed evidence that the foetus ‘suffered from oxygen deprivation and appears to have deformed lower extremities.’

The judge told the courtroom ‘this is a tragic and very difficult case,’ and one of the Munoz family’s lawyers stated ‘there is nothing happy about this day,’ but there’s hope now for future cases such as this one. Nathan Koppel of the Wall Street Journal states ‘legal experts believe the case could prompt lawmakers in Texas and other states to craft laws to clarify a hospital’s obligations in dealing with pregnant patients.’

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