The case of the 38-year-old Andrea Prudente on vacation with her husband Jay: she contracted an infection and risks her life. Evacuation in Spain authorized
Going on holiday to Malta if you are pregnant and run into a problem, or worse if an involuntary termination of pregnancy occurs, the experience can become dramatic (more so than a miscarriage already is). Maltese activists and pro-choice activists (who have a difficult life in Malta) have chosen to make public a delicate affair, naturally at the request of the victim and his partner, who thus hope to get help. And they launched a provocative slogan: If you are pregnant, think carefully before deciding to travel to the Maltese islands. You may not come back alive.
Hemorrhage and spontaneous abortion
Andrea Prudente, a 38-year-old US citizen who is 16 weeks pregnant, on vacation in Malta with her partner Jay for their baby moon – the last vacation before the arrival of the child – felt ill and requested assistance in the emergency room in Gozo; after a visit she was admitted to the Mater Dei hospital in Malta for what appeared to be a spontaneous abortion, with heavy bleeding. An ultrasound confirmed the rupture of the water and the detachment of the placenta. However, the fetus still had a heartbeat. International guidelines on the matter state that in cases where the fetus is no longer viable or has been seriously injured (before 24 weeks), termination of pregnancy should be offered to avoid the risk of maternal infection and the risk of death. Infection can in fact be transmitted, through the ruptured membranes, to the uterus, and therefore through the blood lead to death. Not so in Malta, the only EU country to ban abortion under any circumstances. The only options for those who want to terminate a pregnancy on the island are to purchase illegal abortion drugs online or to search for a termination abroad.
The request of the Ivg
The patient asked to terminate the pregnancy, but her request was denied. She was told that doctors can only intervene if there is evidence that her death is imminent, and not even contracting the infection enough to have access to abortion. She was also told that doctors cannot even discuss the abortion option with her. Prudent was forced to stay in the hospital to wait, risking her life more and more with each passing minute. The family was distraught and desperate for a solution. A medical evacuation in the UK was considered, but to complicate the situation it emerged that the patient tested positive for Covid-19, as he stated in an interview with MaltaToday Isabel Stabile, a gynecologist and exponent of Doctors for Choice Malta, who is following the case closely. Ms. Prudente said she felt held hostage pending the death of the fetus.
The hypothesis of a transfer to Spain
In addition to the hypothesis of a transfer to Great Britain the couple considered moving to Spain, as travel insurance would cover the cost of the air ambulance. The destination is being evaluated, after at first it seemed to be Mallorca. In the last few hours, the authorization to depart has arrived, thanks to the transfer by helicopter. Hopefully, she will be left with a significant trauma, while for Maltese women there remains the problem of a denied right.moreover in a European country, as Irene Chiaia points out above VeryMalta.
However, the country’s civil society tightened largely around the two touristsasking the medical authorities to take action to save Andrea Prudente’s life, e recalled the tragic case of Savita Halappanavar, the Indian-born dentist who died of sepsis in Ireland (a strongly Catholic country with restrictive laws on matters) because she was refused the abortion which would have saved her life. Even in Italy – where abortion should be guaranteed but the percentage of so-called conscientious objectors now makes it very difficult to access termination of pregnancy in public facilities, there have been cases like that of Valentina Milluzzo, a 32-year-old Sicilian who in October 2016 he died at the Cannizzaro hospital in Catania after hours of excruciating pain and after the bodies of the twins she was carrying had come to light lifeless.
June 23, 2022 (change June 23, 2022 | 20:28)
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