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Md. woman says hospital denied same-sex visit

Friday - 1/20/2012, 10:15am  ET

TAKOMA PARK, Md. - A Maryland woman says she was denied the right to visit her same-sex partner at Washington Adventist Hospital.

Linda Cole, of Takoma Park, made the discrimination allegations in complaints filed with the Joint Commission and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Joint Commission is an independent nonprofit that accredits hospitals.

Cole says her legal spouse and partner, Kathryn Wilderotter, was taken to the hospital on Nov. 13 after suffering an epileptic seizure and crashing her car. She says hospital staff refused to recognize her as family.

The Washington Post and WTTG-TV report that the hospital officials attribute the incident to a misunderstanding with staff. The hospital says it will review its patient rights training.

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