L.E.H. et al. v. O.S.E.P.

CSJ 003732/2014/RH001
Download Judgment: Spanish

The plaintiffs filed a guarantee of protection of individual constitutional rights (amparo protection) with the First Instance Court of the Province of Mendoza to condemn the Health Insurance of Public Personnel [Obra Social de Empleados Públicos – O.S.E.P] to provide comprehensive coverage of the assisted reproductive treatment by intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) with pre-implantation genetic diagnostic of the embryo (DGP).

The First Instance Court of the Province of Mendoza dismissed the claim. The plaintiff filed appeal to the Civil, Commercial, Mining and Tributary Court of Appeal of the Province of Mendoza [Cámara de Apelaciones en lo Civil, Comercial, Minas, de Paz y Tributario de la Primera Circunscripción Judicial de Mendoza] which confirmed the previous judgement and dismissed the claim. The plaintiff filed an appeal with the Supreme Court of Justice of Mendoza which also confirmed the previous judgement and stated that the DGP treatment was not included in law 26 862 and that that technique was against the “Altamira Murillo” case of the Inter American Commission of Human Rights. The plaintiffs filed an extraordinary appeal to the Supreme Court of Justice stating that the judgement neglects the fundamental right to assisted reproductive technology guaranteed in case “Altamira Murillo” of the Inter American Commission of Human Rights.

The Supreme Court of Justice held that the right to life and right to reproductive health were not absolute and were limited by the legislation that regulated them. The law that regulated the right to access the assisted reproductive technology treatments was law 22 862. The DGP is not a method included in the health services that the health insurance should provide according to article 8 of law 22 862. At the same time, it can't be considered a treatment of high complexity stipulated in article 2 of the same law because it only mentions: in vitro fertilization (IVF), intracytoplasmic sperm injection, the cryopreservation of embryo and oocytea and the vitrification of reproductive tissues. The judges can't include a medical treatment in a law because that is the faculty of the legislator and would be an interference of their powers. The Supreme Court of Justice confirmed the previous judgement.

"Que, en razón de lo expuesto, deviene inadmisible que sean los jueces o tribunales -y más aún dentro del limitado marco cognoscitivo que ofrece la acción de amparo- quienes determinen
la incorporación al catálogo de procedimientos y técnicas de reproducción humana autorizados, una práctica médica cuya ejecución ha sido resistida en esta causa. Ello es así pues, como lo ha sostenido repetidamente esta Corte, la misión de los jueces es dar pleno efecto a las normas vigentes sin sustituir al legislador ni juzgar sobre el mero acierto o conveniencia de las disposiciones adoptadas por los otros poderes en ejercicio de sus propias facultades." Paragraph 10

"It is inadmissible that the judges or courts, -even more in the limited framework that the amparo protection provides- the ones who determine the incorporation of a medical practice that has been resisted in this case as an authorized assisted reproductive treatment. This is so because as previously stated by this court, the mission of the judges is to give full effect to the current legislation, without substituting the legislator nor to judge over the convenience of the norms adopted by other powers in the exercise of their faculties." Paragraph 10

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