Hospital ordered to give Jehovah's Witness transfusion

Irish Examiner/September 21, 2006

The High Court tonight intervened to save the life of a seriously ill African woman by ordering a Dublin hospital to give her a life-saving blood transfusion.

The 23-year-old Congolese woman, who suffered a major haemorrhage today after giving birth to a healthy baby boy, had refused the treatment on religious grounds because she is a Jehovah’s Witness.

Believed to be the first case of its kind involving an adult in Ireland, the court ruled the Coombe Hospital must put the interests of the child first and save the mother’s life.

It is understood she had lost 80% of her blood.

A spokesman for the Coombe Hospital confirmed doctors had been ordered to act in the best interests of the mother.

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