Abortion Ban Blocks Chemo for Cancer Teen

'My daughter's life comes first,' says Santo Domingo mom
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Jul 26, 2012 1:02 AM CDT
Updated Jul 26, 2012 1:23 AM CDT
Doctors fear prosecution if they begin treatment, say observers.   (?lunar caustic)

(Newser) – An abortion ban in the Dominican Republic is blocking chemotherapy treatment for a pregnant teenager with leukemia. The 16-year-old girl, who's nine weeks pregnant, needs aggressive chemotherapy to fight acute leukemia. But the treatment would likely end the pregnancy, so it's being withheld. The girl's mom is pleading with doctors to treat her child. "My daughter's life is first. I know abortion is a sin and that it goes against the law, but my daughter's health is first," Rose Hernandez told CNN.

Doctors and administrators at the Semma Hospital in Santo Domingo, where the girl is a patient, are believed to be considering starting treatment, but may fear being prosecuted under the strict abortion ban, say observers. (Read more Domincan Republic stories.)

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