Liver Disease Takes the Life of Woman Who Won Suit Against Kansas

HILL CITY, Kan. (AP) A northwest Kansas woman who won her battle to get Kansas to pay for an out-of-state transplant has lost her fight against liver disease.

The Kansas City Star reports Mary Stinemetz, 66, of Hill City died Sunday at a Colorado hospital located near her daughter, three years after she learned she needed a new liver.

The Jehovah’s Witness refused to undergo a transplant at the University of Kansas Hospital because she would need a blood transfusion, which went against her religion.

Last year a Kansas appeals court found the state violated her constitutional right to exercise her religious faith by denying Medicaid coverage for a bloodless transplant in Nebraska.

Her condition got worse by the time she got on a transplant list, and she became ineligible for the procedure.