Hacienda Healthcare in Phoenix, Arizona. Google Maps
Published January 8, 2019
PHOENIX — The woman who has been in a vegetative state for over a decade and gave birth to a child has been identified as being a Native American woman.
“It was confirmed to us by multiple sources who we cannot identify publicly,” commented Arizona’s Family reporter Briana Whitney to Native News Online.
The identity of the 29-year-old woman has not been made public. According to news reports, the woman has been in her vegetative state for over a decade as a result of a near drowning incident at age 15.
The woman has been in the care of Hacienda HealthCare in Phoenix, Arizona and gave birth of a baby boy on December 29, 2018. Phoenix police are handling the case a sexual assault because the woman’s vegetative state.
An unidentified source told local station KTVK that caretakers weren’t aware the woman was pregnant until shortly before she gave birth, and a nurse only realized that the patient was in labor when she started to moan. The source, said by KTVK to be someone “familiar with the situation,” said the baby is healthy.
A person in a vegetative state is unconscious due to a brain injury. They have no awareness of themselves or their environment.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 56 percent of American Indian and Alaska Native women have experienced sexual violence during their lifetimes. Native Americans are twice as likely to experience a rape/assault compared to all races/ethnicities. The Justice Department also says 90 percent of all sexual assaults committed against Native women are done by non-tribal members.