Pro-abortion feminist Gloria Steinem is using her influence to try to keep open an Ohio abortion clinic that was caught breaking the law.
Last week, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that Capital Care Network in Toledo is operating illegally. It violated a two-decades old requirement that ambulatory surgical facilities have a written transfer agreement with a hospital for patient emergencies. The court ruled that the state Department of Health could take away the abortion clinic’s license as a result of the violation.
Steinem, who grew up in Toledo, launched a public effort to keep the abortion facility open Monday, the AP reports. She urged two city hospitals to enter into a transfer agreement with the abortion facility so that it can stay open.
“We must not allow a political regulatory scheme to close Toledo’s remaining abortion clinic,” Steinem said in a public statement Monday. “Its absence would not diminish the number of abortions but would increase the injury and death of women in my home city and state. Democracy begins with each person’s control of his or her own body. Without reproductive freedom, there is no democracy for America women.”
Here’s more from the report:
Steinem strongly urged ProMedica and St. Luke’s Hospital to sign Capital Care’s required transfer agreement, in order to retain safe, legal abortions in the area.
“Ohio hospitals must not allow themselves to be used by politicians to hurt women’s health,” she said, in a statement released through the office of state Rep. Teresa Fedor, a Toledo Democrat.
ProMedica had previously refused to sign such an agreement, but it said it is re-examining its past policy in light of the court’s ruling. Messages were left Monday with St. Luke’s.
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.
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.”
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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.