On the verge of losing parliamentary status for the third time, Deputies gave half a sanction this Thursday to the draft the johanna lawthe initiative that tries to guarantee medical care procedures for the care of women and pregnant people in cases of perinatal death.
With Johanna Piferrer -the promoter of the project- on the premises, it was approved by 216 affirmative votes and one againstFrancisco Sánchez from Together for Change. Now it must be dealt with in the Senate.
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“It seeks to incorporate a more humanized treatment in the face of perinatal death. The WHO considers it a silent death, instead of being accompanied and contained”, said the deputy of the Socialist Bloc, Mónica Fein.
With her baby in her arms, the representative of Juntos por el Cambio, Camila Crescimbeni, spoke from her personal experience: “The last thing I want is to be talking about this project. Two months ago I had to lose Rufino’s twin brother, who was doing very well and never had any complications. After 48 hours, the control gave that my son Silvestre had no more heartbeat. It is the most terrible phrase that can be said to every person who is pregnant ”.
“Accompaniment is important because one is in total shock. One waits for life, not death and he doesn’t know his rights,” she said excitedly.
Was presented for the first time in 2017 by the hand of the leader Magdalena Sierra, at that time a representative of the Frente Para la Victoria, but it was not included in the agenda and lost parliamentary status.
In 2021 it was discussed again, by the hand of the deputy Cristina Álvarez Rodríguez. On that occasion, she obtained a unanimous opinion in all the commissions, but she did not arrive at the venue for her treatment and lost parliamentary status again.
What the Johanna Law project proposes
According to the initiative, it proposes:
- Provide health professionals, who intervene at the time of delivery, with procedures for standardized actions that facilitate health care of those women, pregnant women and families who suffer a perinatal death.
- Women and pregnant persons shall have the right to receive sufficient and appropriate information; a respectful, individual and personalized treatment; make contact with the lifeless body, having the option of do it accompanied by a psychologist.
- They may take reliable knowledge of the causes of death; receive information on lactation, methods of inhibition and/or donation of it.
The case driving the Johanna law
On October 6, 2014, a month and a half before giving birth, Johanna went for a routine ultrasound and Ciro’s heart stopped beating. He had had a pregnancy without complications, but the studies confirmed the nightmare of any pregnant person: his baby had been victim of a perinatal death.
Her desperate requests for a cesarean section were of no use. The doctors replied that she was not an emergency and insisted on inducing labor. During they kept her waiting for almost 10 hours in the maternity hospital, surrounded by the joy of other families that were far from her situation.
Finally, they performed a caesarean section at dawn and when they went to look for the body at the morgue, they found it inside a blue file box. “I decided to cremate it because as for medicine they are NN fetuses, they do not have the right to a first and last name and you have no way to register them with a name; he was going to an NN grave ”, Johanna had said at the time of her to the media.
From there, she committed herself to the fight for women who suffer this type of violence, to raise awareness about their rights and provide them with information on how to report these cases.