Life support

Texas girl at center of survival battle leaves hospital

3 year old Texas girl whose mother fought a legal battle preventing doctors from removing her from life-sustaining treatment has improved enough that she was discharged from hospital last week and will now be cared for at home, a group advocating for her has said.

Texas Right to Life, the state’s largest anti-abortion group, said this week that Tinslee Lewis’ health had “improved so steadily” that she was released from Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth on April 7.

“It’s encouraging to see that the family and the hospital have worked together so much that Tinslee has taken advantage of it and is going home,” Texas Right to Life spokeswoman Kimberlyn Schwartz said Wednesday.

The case was make one’s way through the courts since November 2019, when the hospital had planned to remove Tinslee from life support after invoking Texas’ so-called “10-day rule”. The law can be used when a family disagrees with doctors about withdrawing life-sustaining treatment.

The law states that if a hospital’s ethics committee agrees with doctors, treatment can be stopped after 10 days, as long as a new provider cannot be found to take the patient.

Texas Right to Life spokesperson Kimberlyn Schwartz said that over the past year, “the hospital and the family have worked well together.”

Tinslee had been hospitalized since her premature birth in February 2019. The hospital said she was born with a rare heart defect and suffered from chronic lung disease and severe chronic high blood pressure. She was put on a ventilator several months after birth after going into respiratory arrest, the hospital said.

Schwartz said doctors eventually switched Tinslee from mouth ventilation to a tracheotomy. “It’s helped improve her health to the point where she can go home,” Schwartz said.

She said Tinslee, who is currently using a portable ventilator, has 24-hour nursing care at home.

A statement released by the Cook Children’s Health Care System this week said: ‘The medical teams at Cook Children’s have dedicated their lives to healing children and are tirelessly dedicated to doing what they believe in their hearts and minds to be. the best decision for each patient. »

About two months into the legal proceedings, Lewis had revoked the hospital’s permission to speak about Tinslee.

In the Texas Right to Life statement, Lewis thanked “everyone who stepped up to help my daughter,” including her attorneys, doctors from Cook Children’s, Texas Right to Life and Protect TX Fragile Kids.

“We cherish and appreciate that Tinslee is home,” Lewis said.


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