hospital is investigating a claim by a lesbian couple that a
physician told them same-sex unions are contrary to his
The incident occurred at Spectrum Health's South
Pavilion in Cutlerville. Ashleigh Haberman notified
Spectrum by e-mail that she and her partner, Erica
Schaub, had gone to the urgent care center for treatment of
Schaub's lingering cold.
Schaub told The Grand Rapids Press for a
report published Sunday that the doctor asked who she
was in relation to Schaub, and Schaub replied they
were "life partners."
"She didn't even have that out of her mouth
before he said, 'So what do you guys feel about your
ruling in California?"' Haberman recalled. "As soon as
he looked at us, he knew we were gay, and he was
looking for an opportunity to start that conversation."
Haberman said they told the doctor they agreed
with the ruling allowing gay couples to legally marry
and that they had been married in Canada.
The doctor then allegedly said gay marriage
"shouldn't be called marriage" because it is a
religious-based word and, as a Christian, he did not
consider gay marriage legal, Haberman said.
Spectrum Health's investigation probably will
not be complete until sometime this week, spokesman
Bruce Rossman said.
"We expect our physicians and staff to provide
high-quality care in a professional manner," Spectrum
said in a statement.
Rossman declined to identify the doctor, who did
not return calls from the Press for comment.
Haberman said she and Schaub did not want the
doctor fired and do not plan to file a lawsuit. "I
didn't want it to happen to somebody else," she said.
"I'm not asking him to be OK with it. I'm asking him
to do his job." (AP)