China’s top health authority responds to suicide case of pregnant woman

The National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC) on Thursday responded to the suicide case of the pregnant woman from Yulin, northwestern Shaanxi province, saying it has ordered the local health department to investigate the case, which has sparked outrage on Chinese social media.

The 26-year-old woman, surnamed Ma, who had endured hours of pain, jumped to her death from the fifth floor of a local hospital after her request for a C-section was denied on August 31, 2017.

It remains a mystery who refused to do the operation for the woman, whose baby had a bigger than normal head, making vaginal delivery risky.

Her husband said that he had immediately agreed to his wife’s request, but a doctor checked Ma’s condition and said she was going to give birth soon and did not need a C-section.

On the morning of Sept. 6, the hospital published a statement, claiming that Ma had signed a letter of authorization, authorizing her husband to sign all related documents.

The hospital said it had no right to change the way of delivery since the woman did not revoke the authorization nor was in a life-threatening emergency.

However, the statement was not recognized by the woman’s family.

At a routine press conference of the national health department on Thursday, NHFPC Spokesperson Song Shuli expressed condolences to the woman’s family, saying the department attaches great importance to the case.

The NHFPC has ordered the local health department in Shaanxi to investigate the case, he added.

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