An emergency room physician has lost custody of her daughter due to the increased risk the doctor was under while being exposed to numerous coronavirus patients on a daily basis. The doctor from Florida has lost her shared custody of her four-year-old child to her ex-husband until the pandemic is over.
Theresa Greene's ex-husband filed for temporary sole custody of their only child 'due to mother's significantly heightened exposure to COVID-19'. The judge granted the custody on the same grounds even though she tested negative for the coronavirus. Several doctors are facing the impossible challenge of being a parent while working as a front line medic during the coronavirus pandemic.
Greene expressed her sadness during the situation as the US healthcare system grapples to save the patients who tested positive for the novel coronavirus. The doctor found the situation to be cruel and said that the move is discriminatory against the doctors who are the sole carers or are divorced.
Husband requested for temporary complete custody
Eric Greene, the doctor's husband shares the custody of their daughter. He requested an emergency order demanding the sole custody of their child while the pandemic is over. Theresa tested negative for the coronavirus a few days ago.
The court order by Circuit Judge Bernard Shapiro wrote: "In order to protect the best interests of the minor child, including but not limited to the minor child's safety and welfare, this Court temporarily suspends the Former Wife's timesharing until further Order of Court. The suspension is solely related to the outbreak of COVID-19." The judge said that this was to protect the child's health and welfare after much deliberation over the pandemic situation in Florida.
Theresa Greene pointed out the position taken by the American Medical Association where it is said that the front line workers like Greene herself should be able to go back home to their families after taking proper precaution. The doctor has also tole the media that this has led her to choose between her family and her duty as a doctor. She has said that her battle during the pandemic will continue as she continues to appeal the court decision.
Co-parenting difficulties during the coronavirus
There have been several similar cases were co-parenting have been difficult in the United States. Some cases in the United States reported by the media said that the co-parent would not return the child during shared custody with a front line worker due to fear of the child being exposed to the coronavirus. A nurse from Ohio, Tiffany DeMarcus, faces such a situation where she has been under pressure to quit her job because her ex-partner was not ready to share the custody with her as she was exposed to COVID-19 through her work.
Similar cases have been propping up throughout the country with rising cases. As of Saturday, the US has one of the highest numbers of coronavirus deaths.