Health Officials Release Info About New Jersey Abortion Center They Closed

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 14, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Health Officials Release Info About New Jersey Abortion Center They Closed Email this article
Printer friendly page

by Steven Ertelt Editor
March 14
, 2007

Trenton, NJ ( — New Jersey health officials released more information about why they closed down and Englewood-based abortion business that ran afoul of state health and safety codes. The Metropolitan Medical Associates abortion center is also the place where a botched abortion recently put a woman into a month-long coma.

Health inspectors found dirt and debris throughout the abortion facility, open packages of items that were supposed to remain sterilized before their use, and other problems.

"Two plastic open top bins of sterile forceps, speculum and gauze prep kits are stored directly on the carpeted floor next to the copier in the main office," the report said.

The information came in a report state inspectors gave to the Bergen Record newspaper.

According to the record it received, state officials found forceps encrusted in "brownish blood-like residues" and rusty crochet hooks used in abortions.

They also discovered dark red "dirt and debris" under an exam table that was a quarter-inch thick.

"There was a large dark orangish-yellow stained area, dirt, debris, and syringe caps found under the operating tables in operating rooms #1, 2, 3 and 4," according to the Record. "Employee #2 stated, ‘We do not usually move these tables. The housekeeper cleans around the O.R. tables a couple of times a week.’"

The record reveal publicly for the first time why MMA, which does 10,000 abortions annually, was closed after a two-day investigation. The center also failed a follow-up visit last Tuesday and will continue to be shut down until it curbs the problems, state authorities indicated.

Other problems at the abortion center include a failure to institute an infection control plan and a staffer appointed to oversee infection control did not know about the expected responsibilities and did not have appropriate training.

The state also said MMA failed to notify it "of an event occurring within the facility that jeopardized the health and safety of a patient" — referring to Newark resident Rasheedah Dinkins.

She became severely ill following the abortion and was transferred to Beth Israel Medical Center where she needed blood transfusions and had her uterus removed. She also suffered a stroke due to the serious blood loss and had one of her lungs collapse.

Dinkins said her mother and hospital officials told her she died en route to the medical facility from the abortion center but medical personnel were able to revive her.

"I was laying in my bed and I got the cold shakes," Dinkins, who filed a lawsuit against the abortion facility last week, said about her ordeal. "My body kept going numb. After that, I don’t remember anything."

This is only the second time state health officials ordered one of the state’s 650 ambulatory health centers closed but the second time MMA has been shut down. It was temporarily closed after health and safety violations in 1993.

Dinkins isn’t the only woman who had an abortion at MMA and experienced problems.

Gloria Mozas of Cliffside Park is also suing the abortion center saying staff there misdiagnosed a tubal pregnancy and told her she miscarried the baby when she was actually pregnant with twins.

She told AP an abortion practitioner there did an abortion on her and told her he was just removing dead tissue. B ut a week later she had to undergo a medical procedure to remove the babies who had implanted into her fallopian tubes, causing her severe internal bleeding.

"I’ve been waiting for those doors to be locked for 3 1/2 years," she told AP.