Widow: Bethesda North Hospital won't release my former spouse's medical record reports

BLUE ASH, Ohio -- A Blue Ash woman wants Bethesda North Hospital to release her former spouse's medical records, but the hospital won't let go of the reports.

Marcia Gallas said Thursday the hospital has denied her request because she was married to another woman. Faced with a struggle, Gallas wants help to get the records signed over.

She wears both wedding bands in memory of Barbara Graham, who passed away Easter Sunday after a long battle against cancer. Gallas said the two fell in love 30 years ago.

"I'm grieving," Gallas said. "It's going to take a long time to get over Barbara and I really don't understand why they won't recognize... what am I to think except that they have a problem with same sex marriage?"

She said Graham participated in a study with Ohio State University over 18 years of time, and that she was able to obtain the records from Jewish Hospital.

"They (Bethesda North) just aren't budging," Gallas said. 

She and her attorney have a federal injunction, which is based on another local case that recognizes same sex spouses on a death certificate. As a team, they feel Bethesda North shouldn't put up such a fight.

"All they need to do is release her medical records, that's all I'm asking for," Gallas said. "I don't think that's too much to ask for."

The hospital staff said they are unable to sign Graham's medical records over to Gallas because of state and federal privacy laws, so for now, Gallas only has one option: She can seek help from Graham's sons, who will have to grant her access to the medical information. That process could take weeks to complete.



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