Democrats to investigate claims of forced hysterectomies on immigrants at Georgia detention center

By Elliott Spagat and Jeff Amy | Associated Press

ATLANTA — Leading congressional Democrats reacted furiously Tuesday to lightly substantiated claims that immigrants held at a detention center in Georgia are undergoing questionable hysterectomies.

In a complaint filed Monday, a nurse alleges that the Irwin County Detention Center performed questionable hysterectomies, refused to test detainees for COVID-19 and shredded medical records.

A top medical official with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released a statement “vehemently” disputing the claims, saying only two women have been referred for hysterectomies from the facility since 2018.

Wooten worked full-time as a licensed practical nurse at the immigration jail until July, when she was demoted. 

The statement came after Democrats seized on nurse’s allegations that a gynecologist she called the “uterus collector” was performing “mass hysterectomies” — declaring they would investigate the matter.

A follow-up news conference Tuesday in Atlanta provided little information to substantiate the claims. Lawyers for the nurse, Dawn Wooten, refused to release her full statement that she made to the Department of Homeland Security’s Inspector General. She declined to take questions after making a statement with no reference to mass hysterectomies or did not quantify how many of the procedures were performed on immigrant women at the facility.

Wooten worked full-time as a licensed practical nurse at the immigration jail until July, when she was demoted.

Dr. Ada Rivera, medical director of the ICE Health Service Corps, said both surgeries had been approved by ICE officials.

“To be clear, medical care decisions concerning detainees are made by medical personnel, not by law enforcement personnel,” Rivera said in the statement. “Detainees are afforded informed consent, and a medical procedure like a hysterectomy would never be performed against a detainee’s will.”

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Rivera said ICE would fully cooperate with any resulting investigation by the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General, but said it wished Wooten had brought claims to ICE officials first.

The doctor is not named in the complaint, but lawyers who represent women at the jail said their clients have been taken to a local gynecologist named Dr. Mahendra Amin. Scott Grubman, a lawyer for Amin, said in a statement that he was confident the doctor would be cleared of any wrongdoing. Amin was previously accused by state and federal authorities of falsely billing Medicare and Medicaid in an investigation that led to a $520,000 settlement in 2015.

Democrats were quick to jump on the allegations after spending the last three years

Source:: East Bay – Entertainment

      

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