The Louisiana House Health and Welfare Committee approved legislation that might prohibit a family from ending medical treatment for a pregnant woman who is comatose or otherwise incapacitated.
Rep. Austin Badon, D-New Orleans brought the bill, which is related to a well-known case in Texas, where a brain dead woman was kept on life support for weeks because she was pregnant. Both the woman’s husband and parents fought successfully in court to have her taken off of life support before the pregnancy came to term. But the case raised questions about a Texas law, also found in other states, that requires incapacitated women be given medical care if they are pregnant.
Badon’s proposal might make it difficult for family members or spouses to remove a pregnant woman from life support. If a doctor determines that a woman’s life can be “reasonably maintained” and the fetus will continue to develop and be viable, then measures are supposed to be taken to keep her alive until a child is born.
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