On December 18, 2006 Teresa Savicki went to the Bayside Medical Center in Springfield, Massachusetts for a Ceasarean section. Instead of inserting an IUD, as she had requested, they allegedly tied her tubes without her consent.
This is Savicki's ninth child. She is unmarried. She is on welfare.
Last May, she learned the hospital had no record of a consent form, and on December 15, she filed suit against the attending physicians and the hospital.
The Daily Beast reports that when the Boston Herald recounted her story last week, "the public response to her plight was immediate and vicious." The two stories about Savicki on BostonHerald.com "have generated 1,000 comments each, the vast majority of them hostile."
But Savicki says she's not the woman she's being accused of. “People are under the impression that I had nine kids with nine different daddies,” she says, “and that is not true. I had four kids with my previous partner. He passed away in May, of cancer, and that man worked until the week he died, paying child support and taking care of his kids.” As for her current partner, Angel Flores Tirado, she says they've been together for 10 years and have three children. According to Savicki, “Angel has a full-time job. He works day and night, and he supports his kids.” She says Tirado “wanted another boy, and that’s gone. I can’t." Now she worries he'll leave her because she can't bear more children.
But all this self-defense is academic, says Savicki’s lawyer, Max Borten, a former obstetrician. “The real issue here,” he says, “is who has the right to determine who gets sterilization. The patient? The doctor? A hospital committee? A state committee?” The obvious answer, says Professor Linda Fentiman of Pace University School of Law, is the patient. Fentiman says federal law requires written consent, signed 30 days prior to the procedure. . . .
Fentiman also points to an apparent paradox in what she believes is the ideology of those who are attacking Savicki. “I think it is ironic,” she says, “that, I would guess, many of the people who would be for compulsory sterilization would also be those who are fervently—what they call themselves—pro-life. But what ties it together, I think, is the lack of respect for women’s reproductive autonomy.” Fentiman sees this disdain for women’s rights as pervasive in medicine.
I'm pro-choice. I believe Savicki's attorney and the law professor are on the right track. I believe the doctors and hospital had no business tying her tubes without her consent - if indeed that is what happened. But why in God's name can't these women keep their legs together? Rich or poor, having nine children is obscene.
ADDITION: This is from the first article that the Boston Herald ran on Savicki.
Savicki has nine children from several men, is unemployed and relies on public assistance for two of the four children who live with her. She receives supplemental security income, or SSI, for a disability, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, she said. Her mother has custody of three of her children. Two of her children are no longer minors.
A variation of facts between the first and second pieces.