January 14th, 2014
08:10 AM ET

Family of Pregnant Woman Wants Her Off Ventilator

This week the family of Marlise Munoz is expected to take legal action against the Texas hospital that refuses to unplug her from a ventilator. CNN's Ed Lavandera reports.

Munoz is pregnant and collapsed in late November after suffering a blood clot in her lungs. John Peter Smith hospital in Fort Worth says Texas law requires that Munoz be kept on life support in hopes of saving the unborn baby.

Her mother, Lynne Machado, says  "We were told she was brain dead on November 26th."

Munoz's family says Marlise never wanted to be kept on life support. It's a conversation her husband says they had often.

They're both paramedics and the parents of a 15-month old boy.

The Munoz story has sparked a debate over these laws that override a woman's right to be disconnected from life support if she is pregnant.

About 30 states have these laws on the books.

If Munoz is indeed brain dead like her family says, even the people who helped write the Texas law say her husband's wishes to disconnect should be followed.

Attorneys for Erick Munoz tell CNN legal action is expected this week.

John Peter Smith hospital officials says they're "encouraged by this development because the courts are the appropriate venue to provide clarity, direction and resolution in this matter."

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soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Name*

    My baby was a 24 week premie how could this called dad kill his his baby if she gets disconneted the baby is going to die at least wait give the baby a chance to live

    January 24, 2014 at 11:41 am | Reply
  2. Val

    Yes! Get her off of that ventilator before that baby become viable for God's sake! At 21 weeks there is no time to lose! At this point there is still time to kill the baby!!!

    January 14, 2014 at 6:47 pm | Reply

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