Bioethics Blogs

Texas Mandating Support of Pregnant Women after Death

Three years ago, the Texas courts rejected a claim that the Texas Advance Directives Act required continued “life-sustaining treatment” for brain dead pregnant patient, Marlise Munoz.  After all, if the woman is dead, the treatment cannot be “life sustaining.”


But a bill introduced yesterday would change the TADA.  Texas H.B. 3542 would require:


“A person may not withdraw or withhold life-sustaining treatment under this subchapter from a pregnant patient. This section applies:
(1) regardless of whether there is irreversible
cessation of all spontaneous brain function of the pregnant patient; and
(2) if the life-sustaining treatment is enabling the unborn child to mature.”

Three years ago, the Texas courts rejected a claim that the Texas Advance Directives Act required continued “life-sustaining treatment” for brain dead pregnant patient, Marlise Munoz.  After all, if the woman is dead, the treatment cannot be “life sustaining.”


But a bill introduced yesterday would change the TADA.  Texas H.B. 3542 would require:


“A person may not withdraw or withhold life-sustaining treatment under this subchapter from a pregnant patient. This section applies:
(1) regardless of whether there is irreversible
cessation of all spontaneous brain function of the pregnant patient; and
(2) if the life-sustaining treatment is enabling the unborn child to mature.”

Source: bioethics.net, a blog maintained by the editorial staff of The American Journal of Bioethics.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.