Woman Denied Tubal Ligation Moments Before Surgery

Should hospitals have the final say so when it comes to the procedures you're allowed?

The hospital you deliver in is currently allowed to determine the type of procedures you undergo. The worst part? They don't have to be upfront when informing you about it.

One woman is fighting to change that in the state of Illinois.

In 2013, Angela Valavanis entered the hospital to give birth to her son.

According to her carefully laid-out birth plan, she indicated that if she needed to give birth via a C-section, she wanted to have a tubal ligation at the same time.

Valavanis had a daughter at home and had already endured two miscarriages before her successful pregnancy with her son. She did not want more children, and having her tubes tied while she was already opened up for a C-section for delivery made the most sense.

Moments before her surgery, she was told that the Catholic hospital would not perform the tubal ligation because the contraception procedure was against their policy.

Valavanis says she was never informed of their policy during her pregnancy.

"I knew that doctors are allowed to refuse to perform procedures based on religious beliefs, but I didn't know that an entire institution could just say, 'No, we don't do that,'"she told Yahoo Parenting.

Current laws allow religious hospitals to deny procedures that go against their beliefs. Sterilization goes against Catholic beliefs.

Illinois lawmakers are hoping to modify the law. According to Senate Bill 1564, religious-based institutions cannot deny services to patients.

However, they are required to inform patients about services and treatments that aren't offered based on the institutions' beliefs. Patients must be given adequate time to make other plans so they can find another location to have the procedures done.

The bill, having passed the Illinois Senate, is awaiting approval in the House. Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner is expected to sign it into law if it passes both. Valavanis' story is being used by legislators to get their bill passed.


Valavanis has yet to have her tubal ligation because she does not want to endure another surgery. She has switched doctors.

What do you think of the law? Comment below.