CV NEWS FEED // An Oregon hospital refused a Catholic cancer patient treatment because she voiced her views on “transgenderism.”
The staff at the Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) disregarded Marlene Barbera’s concerns when she commented on the office’s prominently-displayed “transgender” flag. After she had a disagreement over the phone with a staff member, the clinic dropped her as a patient, informing her in an email:
“Effective immediately, you are discharged from receiving medical care at the Richmond Family Medicine Clinic. This action is being taken because of ongoing disrespectful and hurtful remarks about our LGBTQ community and staff… Please note that you are also now dismissed from all OHSU Family Medicine clinics, including Immediate Care clinics.”
In a message to her doctor last year, Barbera had written this:
I have been threatened on Twitter by trans activists with rape and death — so it is daunting to go for medical treatment with that banner proclaiming that what I am, an adult human female, is a mere opt-in category for any gender non-conforming male and not a reality. May I please have a telephone appointment to discuss how I may access your medical care without walking under a banner that seeks to negate all I am?
Barbera thought the message was private, but it was shared with other staff. When she tried to leave a message for her doctor about her medical situation, the receptionist refused and insisted she make an appointment. When she called back, she was still refused service.
“I asked, guessing ‘Did I hurt the trans person’s feelings?’ And the receptionist took offense to the question, asking ‘What did you say?’ slowly and with great emphasis,” Barbera told Reduxx.
A few weeks later, on June 29, the practice manager, Stein Berger, messaged her to say that she had made “transphobic remarks” that harmed the staff of the “inclusive” clinic. That day, the clinic notified her that she could no longer get care at the clinic, effective July 29.
Barbera says the experience has reinvigorated her beliefs.
“Gender ideology is a religion. I do not subscribe to that religion. I would not force anyone to pray the rosary with me,” Barbera said.
“The trans movement says a man is allowed to define being a woman by way of his feelings but that a woman is not allowed to define being a woman by way of her material reality. So really, it is a men’s rights movement. Dangerous to women and children.”
OHSU could not comment on a specific patient due to patient privacy laws, but an OHSU spokesperson told CatholicVote:
An OHSU patient has a right to care that is delivered in a way that is free from abuse, discrimination or harassment based on age, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, culture, language, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, physical or mental disability, religion, socioeconomic status, marital status, military or reserve status, or any other status protected by law.
OHSU Associate Director of Media Relations Sara Hottman also commented that “OHSU patients, families and visitors have a responsibility to refrain from using discriminatory, profane, derogatory or threatening language, imagery or behavior, and understand that these behaviors can result in limitation of visiting privileges and impact access to care at OHSU.”