Toledo, Ohio is on it’s way to becoming abortion free.
In a huge pro-life victory today in the state of Ohio, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled in two separate 5-2 decisions that Capital Care Network of Toledo is operating illegally and Ohio’s largest abortion clinic lacked standing to bring a lawsuit.
The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled that because Capital Care Network of Toledo violated a 21-year-old rule requiring all ambulatory surgical facilities to have written hospital transfer agreements to facilitate emergency treatment, the Ohio Department of Health was within its rights to revoke the clinic’s operating license.
After the University of Toledo Medical Center declined to renew its transfer agreement with Capital Care in 2013, no such agreement was in place until Capital Care negotiated its 2014 agreement with the University of Michigan Health System, which the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) did not accept under its rule because the Ann Arbor, Michigan, location was too far away to accommodate emergency treatment.
In a majority opinion authored by Justice Terrence O’Donnell and released today, the Court ruled that ODH’s revocation of Capital Care’s health care facility license was supported by “reliable, probative, and substantial evidence and is in accordance with law.” The Court held that lower court rulings overturning ODH’s license revocation were based on claims that Ohio’s 2013 law requiring the transfer agreements violated the facility’s constitutional rights. Justice O’Donnell wrote that those courts did not examine the authority of ODH to revoke the license for violating the rule, and the Supreme Court declined to consider the constitutional issues.
Mike Gonidakis, president of Ohio Right to Life., told LifeNews he is delighted by the decision.
“Today, the Court affirmed what a vast majority of Ohioans expected – abortion should not be advanced at the expense of women’s health and safety,” he said.
“Ohio Right to Life is grateful that a super majority of the Supreme Court agreed that this abortion clinic’s so-called safety proposal was preposterous at best. Clearly, the abortion clinic callously disregarded the health and safety of women with a ridiculous proposal to fly women out of state for emergency medical attention. The Court, like our pro-life government, got it right,” Gonidakis told LifeNews. “Now that this issue is settled, Ohio Right to Life expects that this abortion clinic in Toledo will be closed immediately by the Ohio Department of Health.”
The abortion facility had frequently run afoul of state laws. In one case, state health inspectors discovered that after one woman had an abortion, the doctor believed that he might have perforated the woman’s bowel. Capital Care Network did not follow their own medical emergencies procedure, in which they should have called 911. Instead, they sent the patient out the back door and into an employee’s personal car. They dropped her off at the hospital, and then came right back, not ensuring that the woman was treated promptly.
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According to a letter from ODH Director Lance Himes and an attached inspection report, on April 11, 2017, ODH representatives inspected the Capital Care in response to a complaint submitted on Operation Rescue’s recommendation by a pro-life activist.
Those inspectors reviewed the chart for “Patient 1” and interviewed staff members, including “Staff A,” a “patient advocate” who drove Patient A and her “significant other” to the Toledo Hospital emergency room in her private vehicle and dropped them off before returning to work.
The inspection report indicated that Patient 1 was 11.5 weeks pregnant when she reported to the Capital Care Network for a suction abortion using a plastic vacuum tip. An ultrasound revealed possible retained tissue, but after an inspection of the aborted baby remains, staff reported that they found “placenta with complete fetal parts.” The unnamed abortionist noted in Patient 1’s chart, “possible perforation of bowel in cavity,” then ordered that she be “transferred to the hospital for an ultrasound.”
In order for a bowel to be perforated by a plastic vacuum tip during an abortion, it would require the uterus to be perforated first. The combined uterine and bowel perforations are life-threatening injuries.
Capital Care Network failed to send the patient’s medical records to the hospital with her, according to the inspection report. That left emergency room personnel in the dark about the patient’s treatment and condition, thus disrupting the continuity of care requirement that applies to all medical professionals.
This likely delayed emergency care to the seriously injured patient.
The inspection report noted five serious violations identified by the Department of Health:
• Failure to ensure the Medical Emergencies policy was implemented as written;
• Failure of staff to document and review the event;
• Failed to document and review all adverse events as part of its Quality Assurance program;
• Failed to ensure that the patient transported to the hospital was accompanied by her medical record;
• Failure to provide the patient with discharge instructions upon leaving the facility.