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Pregnant woman who could die because Malta doctors won’t perform abortion wants to PUNCH HER stomach

An American woman who began suffering from a miscarriage while on vacation in Malta and is now fearing for her life because doctors have refused to terminate the pregnancy has admitted that she wanted her husband to punch her in the stomach to stop the fetus’ ‘viable’ heartbeat and end her ‘suffering.’

Andrea Prudente, 38, and her husband, Jay Weeldreyer, 45, from Seattle, Washington, were visiting the European island in an attempt to spend some quality time together before welcoming a daughter, when she suddenly developed heavy bleeding and was rushed to the hospital.

The expecting mother, who was 16 week pregnant at the time, thought she had suffered from a miscarriage, and an ultrasound showed a ruptured membrane, detached placenta, and no amniotic fluid in the womb – however, the fetus still had a heartbeat.

Medical professionals at Mater Dei Hospital, where she was admitted, are now refusing to terminate the pregnancy since abortion is illegal in Malta – despite her being at risk for a possible infection, which could enter her bloodstream and kill her, and despite the fetus having a ‘zero per cent chance’ of survival.

But Andrea considered taking matters in her own hand, with her husband revealing to the Today show in a new interview that she asked him to hit her ‘as hard as he could’ in her stomach to stop the fetus’ heartbeat.

A woman who suffered from a miscarriage in Malta and could now die because doctors refused to abort the baby has admitted she wanted her husband to punch her in the stomach

Andrea Prudente, 38, and her husband, Jay Weeldreyer, 45, from Washington, were visiting the European island when she suddenly developed heavy bleeding and was rushed to the hospital

Andrea Prudente, 38, and her husband, Jay Weeldreyer, 45, from Washington, were visiting the European island when she suddenly developed heavy bleeding and was rushed to the hospital

An ultrasound showed that Andrea, who was 16 weeks pregnant, had a ruptured membrane, detached placenta, and no amniotic fluid in the womb - however, the fetus still had a heartbeat

An ultrasound showed that Andrea, who was 16 weeks pregnant, had a ruptured membrane, detached placenta, and no amniotic fluid in the womb – however, the fetus still had a heartbeat

‘There was a moment when Andrea told me she was seriously considering asking me to punch her as hard as I can in the stomach, to start labor or stop the heart,’ he told the outlet.

‘You are looking at your partner and she’s asking you to do everything that goes against your nature – hurting her, hurting the baby you want – but at the same time it might be the path to save her

‘You’re pleading and pleading, and there’s no way to get the help you want.’

Jay recalled feeling ‘elation’ when they found out that they were expecting their first child together. But when he was told their baby ‘wasn’t going to survive,’ their excitement soon turned to pain.

‘I was gutted. Heartbroken. I thought, “What’s next? Is Andrea safe?” he explained. ‘There was an awareness that this wasn’t over yet, and we really don’t get to grieve until it is.’

Infection can easily enter Andrea’s body through the ruptured membrane and could get into her uterus – or even her bloodstream, potentially leading to death. 

On top of that, she also has an umbilical cord protruding from her cervix, which puts her at an ‘extreme risk’ of hemorrhaging.

Andrea reportedly asked doctors to terminate the pregnancy, but her request was denied as abortion is currently illegal in Malta – which is located in the Mediterranean sea near Italy. 

Medical professionals at Mater Dei Hospital, where she was admitted, are now refusing to terminate the pregnancy since abortion is illegal in Malta (pictured)

Medical professionals at Mater Dei Hospital, where she was admitted, are now refusing to terminate the pregnancy since abortion is illegal in Malta (pictured)

Doctors refused to abort the baby, despite Andrea being at risk for a possible infection, which could enter her bloodstream and kill her, and despite the fetus having no chance of survival

Doctors refused to abort the baby, despite Andrea being at risk for a possible infection, which could enter her bloodstream and kill her, and despite the fetus having no chance of survival

Andrea considered taking matters in her own hand, with her husband telling the Today show that she asked him to hit her 'as hard as he could' in her stomach to stop the fetus' heartbeat

Andrea considered taking matters in her own hand, with her husband telling the Today show that she asked him to hit her ‘as hard as he could’ in her stomach to stop the fetus’ heartbeat

Doctors for Choice Malta – a non-profit organization made up of pro-choice professionals fighting the abortion ban on the island – reported on its website that women who have abortions in Malta could face a maximum of three years in prison.

Doctors who help carry out the abortions could also face jailtime and a permanent revocation of their license, with the company adding, ‘There are no exceptions in the law to allow an abortion even when the woman’s health is at risk, in cases of severe fetal malformation, or in cases of rape or incest.’

‘It wasn’t until a couple days later that we realized the details of the legal restrictions, and that made the behavior of the medical professionals make a lot more sense. It hammered home just how bad our situation was,’ Jay told the Today show.

The couple was given two options – sit and wait for the pregnancy to end on its own and hope that nothing happens to Andrea in the meantime, or take an ‘extremely risky’ flight to a nearby country where abortion is allowed.

They spent days trying to get her medically evacuated, and according to the couple, Mater Dei Hospital didn’t make the process any easier for them.

Andrea told the Guardian that the hospital was ‘uncooperative in their attempts to leave and in sharing medical records with her insurance company.’

‘I just want to get out of here alive,’ she told the outlet earlier this week, from her hospital room in Malta’s capital, Valletta. ‘I couldn’t in my wildest dreams have thought up a nightmare like this.’ 

Women who have abortions in Malta could face a maximum of three years in prison. Activists are seen protesting Malta's abortion law earlier this month

Women who have abortions in Malta could face a maximum of three years in prison. Activists are seen protesting Malta’s abortion law earlier this month

Desperate for a solution, Andrea and Jay are going to have her medically evacuated to Spain where she can get an abortion. Activists are seen protesting Malta's abortion law

Desperate for a solution, Andrea and Jay are going to have her medically evacuated to Spain where she can get an abortion. Activists are seen protesting Malta’s abortion law

Jay, called the hospital's actions an 'inconceivable form of emotional and psychological torture.' Activists are seen protesting Malta's abortion law

Jay, called the hospital’s actions an ‘inconceivable form of emotional and psychological torture.’ Activists are seen protesting Malta’s abortion law

Jay called the hospital’s actions an ‘inconceivable form of emotional and psychological torture,’ while Andrea added that she feels like she is being ‘traumatized.’

While speaking to the Today show, Jay further slammed the hospital for ‘prolonging his wife’s suffering.’

‘There’s a kind of torture that happens, psychologically, when you’ve been attaching to a pregnancy, seeing her on the ultrasound and making plans, only to learn you can’t have her,’ he said.

‘And then you encounter a medical system that puts you in the situation we’re in now – probably the worst situation imaginable.

‘They have the capacity to provide the help. It’s right there and available. But not only will they not help, but they’re doing things to prolong suffering. We wanted this baby girl, and without water she’s now compressed.’

On top of being terrified for his wife’s health, he is also worried about the cost of her medical treatment, admitting that it has ‘wrecked their finances.’

‘Insurance is arranging this, but we’re responsible for everything above and beyond what they cover,’ he said.

Thankfully, the pair was able to secure an emergency flight to Spain, which will happen in the coming days. They are now sharing her story with the world in the hopes of raising awareness and ‘avoiding a tragedy.’

‘I don’t want this to happen to more people,’ Andrea added to the Guardian. 


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