An American woman is suing a Florida hospital for refusing to allow her to see her partner while she was on her deathbed.
In 2007, Janice Langbehn’s partner of 18 years, Lisa Pond, was rushed to the Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami after collapsing as a result of an aneurysm.
The hospital refused to take information from Langbehn regarding Pond’s medical history and also refused Langbehn and their three children visitation for nearly eight hours, telling her that she was in an antigay city and state, and could expect no information or acknowledgment as family.
Langbehn was only allowed five minutes to see Pond before she died thanks to the intervention of a Catholic priest.
Later, Langbehn was denied Pond’s death certificate by the State of Florida and the Dade County Medical Examiner, even though it was crucial for their children’s life insurance and Social Security benefits.
Langbehn is now suing the hospital, through the gay rights group Lambda Legal, and is fighting to keep the case in court.
The hospital has applied to have the case dismissed on the grounds that under the law it has no obligation to allow visitors to see patients.