A Maryland Catholic hospital's cancellation of a transgender man's hysterectomy surgery was deemed "discriminatory" by a federal judge last week.
According to CBN News, on Friday, U.S. District Court Judge Deborah Chasanow ruled that the University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center's decision not to perform the surgery on Jesse Hammons, a biological female, was "discriminatory" under the Affordable Care Act.
In January 2020, the hospital canceled the hysterectomy of Hammons the night before it was scheduled to take place. At the time, a physician recommended the surgery to treat gender dysphoria.
The hospital chief's medical officer, however, told the surgeon that they "cannot do transgender surgery at St. Joseph" due to the institution's religious beliefs. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) then filed a lawsuit on Hammons' behalf.
In Chasnow's ruling, she contended that the hospital must treat all patients equally since it is a state-run facility.
"This court has determined that undisputed facts establish that, as a matter of law, Defendants discriminated against (Hammons) on the basis of his sex," Chasanow wrote.
"This policy, and the reasoning behind it, implicates sex stereotyping in that it prohibits treatment that facilitates patients' physical nonconformity to their sex assigned at birth," she added.
A spokesperson for St. Joseph Medical Center, however, said they did not agree with many of the judge's conclusions.
"The University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center and the University of Maryland Medical System are carefully reviewing the decision from Judge Chasanow," the spokesperson said. "We dispute many of the conclusions that were reached in this decision and may be in a position to comment further after additional analysis of the ruling. Legal disagreements aside, we sincerely wish the very best for Mr. Hammons, and we support his efforts to seek the highest quality healthcare."
"We may disagree on certain technical, legal points, but compassion for the patients we serve remains foundational to our work," the statement continued. "This legal claim stems directly from, and is traceable to, a surgeon mistakenly scheduling a procedure that could not be performed at UM SJMC."
The spokesperson also noted that Hammons turned down the surgery when the hospital offered it at a different location.
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Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for Christian Headlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.