"The Ronan Report" provides insight about the activities at the Western Maryland Health System in Cumberland, Maryland, and about the changes taking place in healthcare today from a CEO's perspective.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Wanting to Have Your Cake and Eating It, Too

Rarely do I criticize other hospitals and health systems; heck, health care is tough enough.  However, there is a Catholic hospital in Colorado that is fighting a wrongful death case of a mother along with her twin babies.  Related to the death of the babies, the hospital has been using a defense based on Colorado law that states that an individual isn't considered alive until after birth.  Unfortunately, that defense conflicts with beliefs of the Catholic Church, which state that life begins at conception.  You can't have it both ways.  They need to "man up," if you will, and adhere to the teachings of the Catholic Church.  I also find it especially hypocritical of the bishops of Colorado who have to be looking the other way as this case proceeds. What I find interesting is that the hospital won the case twice, but it is now under appeal by the plaintiff in the Colorado State Supreme Court. 

I wrote the preceding blog on the weekend and saw an article yesterday that the hospital is no longer using Colorado law as their defense.  After a meeting with the three bishops of Colorado this week, the hospital officials said that they would no longer use the Colorado law in their defense.  The attorneys for the hospital were thrown under the proverbial bus and blamed for the defense strategy.  In reality, it doesn't work that way.  The leadership of any hospital has to be on board with any strategy that the defense will use in such a case.  Also, being part of a large system, the leadership at the top of that system also had to have green lighted the original defense strategy.  I am glad that they finally got it right--just in time for various dioceses across the country that are suing the federal government over the affordable care act under the premise that it violates the sanctity of life by holding employers to the contraceptive mandate.

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