Doctor refuses treatment of same sex couple’s baby
Posted by doctore0 on February 20, 2015
Both of her mothers, Krista and Jami Contreras were married in Vermont in 2012.
In October 2014 they welcomed a beautiful baby bay into the world and were quickly confronted with an ugly reality, one they say from a place they never expected.
“As far as we know Bay doesn’t have a sexual orientation yet so I’m not really sure what that matters,” Jami said. “We’re not your patient – she’s your patient. And the fact is that your job is to keep babies healthy and you can’t keep a baby healthy that has gay parents?”
Last September when the expectant mothers first met Dr. Vesna Roi at Eastlake Pediatrics in Roseville. She was recommended by their midwife.
“We were really happy with her,” Krista said. “The kind of care she offered, we liked her personality, she seemed pretty friendly. She seemed pretty straight up with us.”
The Contrerasas were told to make an appointment with Roi once Bay arrived. The baby was born at home and when she was six days old – they went in.
But instead of seeing Dr. Roi, another doctor greeted them.
“The first thing Dr. Karam said was ‘I’ll be your doctor, I’ll be seeing you today because Dr. Roi decided this morning that she prayed on it and she won’t be able to care for Bay,” Jami said.
“Dr. Karam told us she didn’t even come to the office that morning because she didn’t want to see us.”
The new mothers were shocked, hurt and angry.
“It was embarrassing, it was humiliating and here we are, new parents trying to protect her,” Jami said. “And we know this happens in the world and we’re completely prepared for this to happen other places. But not at our six-day-old’s wellness appointment.”
Bay’s parents proceeded with the appointment with the other doctor then found another pediatric group for their baby.
“When we started calling other pediatricians my first thing on the phone was, we’re lesbian moms – is this okay with you,” Krista said.
Still upset, the new moms shared their story on social media. People started calling Eastlake Pediatrics to share their alarm. On Feb. 9, nearly four months after the appointment – the Contreras family finally received this letter from Roi.
The letter read:
“After much prayer following your prenatal, I felt that i would not be able to develop the personal patient-doctor relationships that I normally do with my patients.”