Another Jehovah's Witness has died because of her religious beliefs, but this time, she also took the life of her unborn baby. The effect on staff at the Sydney hospital was horrific, as both were considered to be avoidable deaths.
Had she agreed to the transfusion, she would have gone into remission and the unborn baby had a very good chance of survival.
The 28 year old was diagnosed with leukemia seven months into her pregnancy and doctors told her that she could give birth via a caesarean section and undergo chemotherapy, but both would require blood transfusions. She refused both options.
The baby died in utero and the woman died 13 days after she was diagnosed when her organs shut down and she suffered a stroke.
Sascha Callaghan, an expert in ethics and law at the University of Sydney, said the law as it stands today allows the mother to make decisions that affect the fetus, even if it were likely to survive outside her body.
"This woman had a long-held commitment to the Jehovah's Witness faith and that's how she chose to die. We are all entitled to die with dignity and when your fetus is in utero, it is inextricably tied to your life."