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San Francisco, Calif., Mar 25, 2019 / 02:00 pm (CNA).- A group of five Catholic hospitals in California is being sued by a woman who identifies as a transgender man after one of its locations, St. Joseph Hospital, Eureka, refused to perform a hysterectomy.
Oliver Knight is suing St. Joseph Health of Northern California, alleging that she was refused the surgery because of her “gender orientation.”
Suit - Humboldt - County - Superior - Court
The suit was filed in the Humboldt County Superior Court on Thursday, March 21. In the lawsuit, Knight says that workers at the hospital canceled the surgery because she identifies as transgender. Knight had identified herself as “male” for a period of four years before the surgery, which was initially scheduled for Aug. 30, 2017.
Prior to the scheduled hysterectomy, Knight had begun cross-sex hormone therapy and undergone a mastectomy.
Surgery - St - Joseph - Knight - Hysterectomy
After the surgery at St. Joseph was denied, Knight underwent a hysterectomy at a hospital unaffiliated with the St. Joseph Health of Northern California system, 30 minutes away.
Knight’s lawsuit suit claims that by denying the surgery St. Joseph Health caused “severe anxiety and emotional turmoil.”
Knight - Doctor - Hysterectomy - Treatment - Gender
Knight’s doctor prescribed the hysterectomy as treatment for gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria is a condition in which a person believes themselves to have been “misassigned” their gender at birth.
St. Joseph Health said in a statement reported March 25 that hysterectomies are only performed at their facilities when they have been deemed “medically necessary,” and not for purposes of sterilization. The teaching of the Catholic Church recognizes such procedure as licit when there is a grave and present danger to the life or health of the mother, and when the intention of the procedure is not to prevent the possibility of conception.
January - Congregation - Doctrine - Faith - Response
In January 2019, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued an authoritative response which explained the circumstances under which a hysterectomy could...
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