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Lori Stodghill was 31-one years old, seven-months pregnant with twin boys and feeling sick when she arrived at St. Thomas More hospital in Cañon City on New Year's Day 2006. She was vomiting and short of breath and she passed out as she was being wheeled into an examination room. Medical staff tried to resuscitate her but, as became clear only later, a main artery feeding her lungs was clogged and the clog led to a massive heart attack. Stodghill's obstetrician, Dr. Pelham Staples, who also happened to be the obstetrician on call for emergencies that night, never answered a page. His patient died at the hospital less than an hour after she arrived and her twins died in her womb.
DENVER-- In the next few months, as the Kansas-based Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Health System assumes control of two hospitals in the metro area formerly run by Exempla Healthcare, nearly 40 percent of hospital beds here will be run under directives approved by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops. Abortions will be limited to cases where the mother is at risk of death. Reproductive services will also likely be severely curtailed, as will end-of-life care, regardless of legal advance directives authored by patients.