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More migrant women say they did not OK surgeries while at Georgia ICE detention center, AP reports

More migrant women say they did not OK surgeries while at Georgia ICE detention center, AP reports
Posted at 11:41 AM, Sep 18, 2020

HOUSTON — An Associated Press review of medical records for four detained immigrant women and interviews with lawyers have revealed growing allegations that a gynecologist performed surgeries and other procedures that the women never sought or didn't fully understand.

Dr. Mahendra Amin was linked this week to allegations of unwanted hysterectomies performed on immigrant women at Irwin County Detention Center in Georgia.

Some procedures could be justified based on problems noted in the medical records, but lawyers and medical experts say the women's lack of consent or knowledge raises severe legal and ethical issues.

Amin provided gynecological treatment or performed surgery on eight women dating back to 2017, including one hysterectomy, according to an attorney an immigration and civil rights lawyer working with attorneys to investigate medical treatment at the detention center.

The AP's report comes days after a nurse's complaint at the detention center was widely published. Dawn Wooten claimed that many immigrant women were taken to an unidentified doctor she called the "uterus collector" because of how many hysterectomies he performed.

In an interview with The Intercept, Amin said he performed "one or two hysterectomies in the past three years." HIs lawyer told the AP that Amin was looking forward to the "facts coming out," and claimed that he would be cleared of wrongdoing.

The AP did not find evidence of the "mass hysterectomies" that Wooten alleged. Wooten's complaint prompted outrage from Democrats and an investigation by the Department of Homeland Security's Inspector General.

LaSalle Corrections, the private prison company that operates the jail, "strongly" refuted the "allegations and any implications of misconduct." Tony Pham, the acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said that if the allegations were true, he would make necessary corrections and "continue to prioritize the health, welfare and safety of ICE detainees."