3:12pm

Mon July 18, 2011
Science/Health

Report Highlights Limits on Hospital Merger

For months, the University of Louisville has been in merger talks with Jewish Hospital and St. Mary’s Healthcare and Catholic Health Initiatives. Mergers involving Catholic institutions often raise concerns about reproductive health issues, since the religion is opposed to many procedures that could affect birth control. U of L will maintain medical facilities that are not affected by the merger, and previously, school officials said those offices would provide services that are frowned upon or banned by the Catholic Church.

But a report in the Courier-Journal uncovers the fact that some procedures, such as tubal ligations, can’t conveniently be moved.

That means women who deliver through C-sections at the downtown hospital will no longer be able to have their fallopian tubes tied at the same time, as is often done.

Instead, women who deliver babies at University and want a tubal ligation may have to have it done in a separate surgery elsewhere — subjecting them to a second anesthesia and extra costs.

“That’s really inappropriate,” said Dr. Marcello Pietrantoni, a Louisville obstetrician who specializes in high-risk pregnancies. “You’re going through a second procedure, and the risks of complications … are doubled.”