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WTFrick?!? Chief of Staff delivers own son and gets CPS called on him...

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Son's delivery puts doctor at odds with his own Folsom hospital

By Jennifer Garza The Sacramento Bee
Last modified: 2012-04-28T05:56:00Z
Published: Saturday, Apr. 28, 2012 - 12:00 am| Page 1B

Six days old, Ivan Cooper slept peacefully in his mother's arms last week, unaware of the turmoil surrounding his birth.

Cooper was born April 11 at Mercy Hospital in Folsom. His mother, Simone Morin, wanted a natural childbirth, even refusing ibuprofen after nine hours of labor. His father, Dr. Daniel Cooper, is the hospital's former chief of staff who proudly delivered his son that morning.

Their celebration didn't last long. Within hours of his birth, the newborn was at the center of what the couple describe as a dispute between them and the hospital over the medical treatments that parents can refuse for their children.

The dispute escalated, the doctor and his wife said, when they left the hospital with the baby - 12 hours after he was born - against medical advice. Alarmed staff called Child Protective Services to report the child was in potential danger, they said.

"What was supposed to be a wonderful day turned into a very stressful one," said Cooper, 53. "If this could happen to me, a doctor with privileges at the hospital, how is an 18-year-old who may not know her rights treated?"

Now Cooper and Morin have filed a complaint against the hospital with the Joint Commission, a not-for-profit organization that accredits and certifies health care programs in the United States. Officials with the commission said they could not comment on Cooper's complaint.

Hospital officials also said they could not comment on the complaint, citing privacy and legal concerns.

In a statement, Don Hudson, president of Mercy Hospital Folsom, said: "Parents have the right to refuse treatment for themselves and their children. However, health care providers may be obligated to notify the appropriate authorities if refusing treatment places a child's health in potential danger."

Cooper and Morin deny their child was in potential danger. "He went home with his father, a doctor," Cooper said. "I'm stunned that they could think he was in danger."

Cooper and Morin had planned a stress-free home birth for their first child together. A midwife was on call. Labor was on a birthing ball. Lights would be dimmed.

Morin, 37, has a 5-year-old daughter, Isadora. Morin knew that she wanted a home birth for her second child. Cooper, who has a thriving family practice in Folsom with more than 10,000 patients, said he was reluctant. But Morin consulted with a midwife, prepared their Fair Oaks home and eventually persuaded Cooper.

Morin's labor went well at first. But when the baby showed signs of stress, Cooper insisted Morin go to Mercy Hospital in Folsom where he served a two-year term as chief of staff that ended in January. Working with the labor and delivery medical team - which Cooper praised - the physician delivered Ivan at 6:01 a.m. on April 11.

The problems started almost as soon as the baby was born - even the time of his birth is in dispute. His birth certificate states he was born at 6:06 am. His father insists it was 6:01 a.m.

Cooper said a doctor assigned to his son's care and a nurse entered Morin's room and began criticizing Morin's decision to have a vaginal delivery after having a C-section.

The new parents said they were at odds with the medical staff about treatment throughout the day, from when to bathe the baby - the nurse wanted to wash him immediately, Morin wanted to wait - to how to administer the vitamin K that is routinely given to newborns to help prevent a rare problem of bleeding into the brain weeks after childbirth. The doctor wanted to give the baby a shot, the couple said. Cooper brought the vitamin in liquid form to the hospital.

They said they disagreed about other treatments, including drawing blood for the baby. Cooper and Morin said their tone was calm. "There was no yelling or anything like that," Cooper said. "We just disagreed."

In retrospect, Cooper said he should have transferred his son to his care. "That way he would have been my patient and I could have discharged him," he said. But Cooper said he didn't want to do that out of respect to the staff.

After several hours of going back and forth, Cooper went home to pick up the baby's car seat. When he returned to the hospital, he learned the nurse had called Child Protective Services. The family - all three of them - left the hospital.

Officials with Child Protective Services said they also could not comment on the case, citing privacy concerns.

But the agency did issue a statement to the Bee: "Parents have the right to make medical decisions on behalf of their children, including declining health and medical intervention. CPS does not have the authority to intervene in these cases unless there is imminent risk of serious harm to the health of the child."

Read more here:
by on Apr. 28, 2012 at 10:48 PM
Replies (11-20):
by on Apr. 28, 2012 at 11:16 PM
Well where I worked there were too many real calls to deal with bs. I worked in the ER and flipped out a few times. I told the cops to "pretend they ran and shoot" one couple. His reply was "I wish I could drag them behond the car". Not getting into details bc its sad but it went from abuse to murder :-(

Quoting VintageWife:


Quoting kitty8199:

I had a patient once who said the nurses called CPS on her bc she didn't vax or circ. She said CPS taled to her found out what the issue was laughed and told the nurses it was her choice and to stop wasting their time.

At least some CPS offices see these kind of calls as ridiculous!

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by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 2:10 AM
Wow what state was this?
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by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 2:14 AM
Holy crap! I live right near's like 20 min away. I can't believe they treated their former BOSS that way. That's ridiculous. I can only imagine how they treat a regular old patient.
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by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 4:43 AM


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by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 4:52 AM

I am speechless over this. No parent should have to go through that ever.

by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 9:08 AM

Wow.  That is terrible!  If they treat one of their own that way, I imagine they bully a lot of their regular patients. 

by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 9:28 AM

banging head into wallI left my freestanding birthing center 5 hours after delivery. The nurses said, "we have to clear you with your midwife" I said, "please call her, we've already discussed this". I think they were sad they didn't have an opportunity to hold my little girl much.

by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 9:36 AM


by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 10:07 AM

He is entirely right. Imagine, if they could treat him like that- SO disrespectful and denying their rights as a patient and a parents- how are they treating the most ordinary person that walks through those doors? What a nightmare! : *(

by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 11:13 AM
Good grief! I'm glad I had a hb.
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