BAD MEDICINE

Why Is An Ohio Hospital Refusing To Release Woman’s Medical Records To Her Wife?

6a00d8341c730253ef01a511ef3c13970c-500wi“I’m grieving,” Marcia Gallas told WCPO News in Cincinnati. “It’s going to take a long time to get over Barbara and I really don’t understand why they won’t recognize… what am I to think except that they have a problem with same-sex marriage?”

Gallas and her wife Barbara Graham were legally married in Canada in 2003 after 20 years of being together. In April, Graham passed away after a long battle with cancer. Now, Gallas is trying to retrieve her late wife’s medical records, but Bethesda North Hospital in Cincinnati is refusing to hand them over.

Gallas explained that she was able to obtain her wife’s charts from one hospital, but staff at Bethesda North “just aren’t budging,” despite the fact that she has a federal injunction.

The hospital claims it is unable to sign over Graham’s medical records to Gallas due to state and federal privacy laws, but according to Gallas, they told her attorney that until the stay on same-sex marriage in Ohio is overridden, they would not cooperate with her.

Gallas’ next option is to seek help from Graham’s sons, who will have to grant her access to the information, but that process could take several weeks to complete.

“All they need to do is release her medical records,”  Gallas said. “That’s all I’m asking for. I don’t think that’s too much to ask for.”

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