Savita Halappanavar went to the hospital complaining about severe back pain and knew that she was in the process of miscarrying. The doctors at the Catholic hospital in Ireland refused to help her by providing an abortion because they could detect a fetal heartbeat. The 31 year old who was originally from India died on 28 October and her death is now being investigated. Savita died from septicaemia.
According to her husband, Praveen Halappanavar, the staff at University Hospital Galway infromed them that Ireland was “a Catholic country” and refused to perform the abortion. Praveen is certain that his wife would have lived had the hospital performed the abortion.
Praveen told the BBC that “It was her first baby, first pregnancy and you know she was on top of the world basically. She was so happy and everything was going well, she was so excited. On the Saturday night everything changed, she started experiencing back pain so we called into the hospital, the university hospital.”
Unfortunately, Savita continued to experience pain and asked a consultant if she could be induced and they said “They said unfortunately she can’t because it’s a Catholic country. Savita said to her she is not Catholic, she is Hindu, and why impose the law on her. But she said ‘I’m sorry, unfortunately it’s a Catholic country’ and it’s the law that they can’t abort when the foetus is live,” Praveen stated. The fetal heart stopped, but it was pretty much too late.
Praveen explained that “I got a call at about half twelve on the Wednesday night that Savita’s heart rate had really gone up and that they had moved her to ICU. Things just kept on getting worse and on Friday they told me that she was critically ill.” Savita’s organs began to fail and on 28 October, she died.
Several Catholic countries that have imposed the Vatican’s edict against abortions have seen a marked rise in maternal deaths in the months and years following the legislative move.