Mainumby Girl (Precautionary Measures) – PM 178/15 – Mainumby, Paraguay

On June 8th, 2015, the IACHR decided to request that precautionary measures be adopted for the girl named Mainumby in Paraguay. The request for precautionary measures alleges that the 10-year old Mainumby became pregnant as a result of sexual abuse allegedly perpetrated by her mother’s husband. According to the request, on January 20, 2014, the alleged abuses were denounced by the mother to the Criminal State Attorney’s Office No. 5, but the case was reportedly dismissed in August 2014, according to the information provided, without investigating the facts with due diligence. The request adds that at the end of April 2015, the “Hospital Materno Infantil Santísima Trinidad” allegedly communicated to the mother that the girl had a high risk pregnancy because of her young age and the incomplete development of her uterus. At this hospital, the girl was supposedly assisted by the hospital’s psychologist and social worker, to whom she reported the alleged sexual abuse by her mother’s husband. The request reports that on May 12, 2015, a Medical Board composed of doctors, psychiatrists and psychologists with various specialties allegedly issued an opinion recommending the adoption of “the measures necessary for the well-being of the girl.” According to the report, the girl measured 1.39 meters; weighed 34 kg and allegedly suffered from malnutrition and anemia, also running “a four times higher risk to life than in an adult pregnancy.” Additionally, the report indicated that, if the pregnancy were to continue, the girl allegedly has a 1.6 times higher risk of postpartum hemorrhage; 4 times higher risk of endometrial infection; 1.4 times higher risk of anemia; 1.6 times higher risk of eclampsia, infections and systemic risks for her reproductive future. Therefore, the medical opinion supposedly recommended “to interrupt the pregnancy and to avoid the re-victimization of the girl.” After analyzing the allegations of fact and law, the Commission believes that the information shows, prima facie, that Mainumby is in a serious and urgent situation, as her life, health and personal safety are said to be threatened and at risk. Consequently, in accordance with Article 25 of the IACHR Rules of Procedure, the Commission asked the State of Paraguay to protect the life and personal integrity of the child, to ensure that she has access to adequate medical treatment for her situation and the treatment recommended by the specialists, in light of the technical guidelines of the World Health Organization and other similar sources applicable to the sexual and reproductive health of girls and adolescents, in which all the options available are assured; to ensure that the rights of the child are duly represented and guaranteed in all health decisions affecting the child, including the right of the child to be informed and participate in decisions affecting her health in accordance with her age and maturity; and take all necessary measures so that the girl has all of the technical and family support necessary to comprehensively protect her rights.