Woman Comatose Month After Botched Abortion Gets $1.9 Million Settlement

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 13, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Woman Comatose Month After Botched Abortion Gets $1.9 Million Settlement

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
December 13
, 2009

Englewood, NJ (LifeNews.com) — An abortion business in New Jersey has settled a $1.9 million lawsuit out of court filed by a woman who was comatose for one month following a botched abortion. Metropolitan Medical Associates, based in Englewood, New Jersey and a center that does thousands of abortions annually, was responsible.

Newark resident Rasheedah Dinkins had an abortion in January 2007 at the Metropolitan Medical Associates abortion business that went horribly wrong.

Dinkins, who is now 22, became severely ill following the abortion and was transferred to Newark 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.

"I was laying in my bed and I got the cold shakes," Dinkins told AP in March 2007 about her ordeal. "My body kept going numb. After that, I don’t remember anything."

"I think it’s horrible what I had to go through," she said at the time.

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. She told AP she regards her decision to have an abortion as a bad one, saying "I probably wouldn’t have made this choice."

Adam Slater, Dinkins’ attorney, filed a lawsuit against Metropolitan Medical Associates on her behalf and said he hoped it would help to "get to the bottom of why this incredibly horrible result could have happened."

He told The Record newspaper yesterday that the high number of abortions MMA does was a factor.

"We learned from the case that their volume of procedures was one factor that led to this problem," he said. "When you do too many procedures, you start to lose sight of the fact that these are all separate patients and separate procedures."

Dinkins had "greater-than-expected bleeding, they couldn’t stop it, they eventually took extraordinary measures to stop it, and then they sent her home," Slater said.

"They should have sent her to Englewood Hospital, which is less than a mile away, where they would have examined her and found she had a uterine rupture. They would have treated her, and she would have been fine. But the damage from her excessive bleeding led to catastrophic injuries," he added.

Now, MMA has settled the $1.9 million lawsuit and its lawyer, Frank Capese, told AP yesterday that he couldn’t comment on the details of the settlement because the abortion center’s insurance carrier set a strict confidentiality agreement.

He claimed the abortions done at Metropolitan Medical Associates are safe.

The Record newspaper indicates the settlement includes $1 million from the abortion business, $575,000 from the main abortion practitioner in the case, Keith Gresham, and $325,000 from another abortion practitioner who assisted, Nicholas Kotopoulos.

However, the botched abortion caused so many medical complications that Newark Beth Israel Medical Center filed a complaint with state officials.

The Department of Health and Senior Services investigated the abortion facility and found dirty forceps, rusty crochet hooks used to remove IUDs, and a quarter-inch of dirt and debris under an examining table.

In ordering the abortion business to close, the Department said the abortion facility had poor infection control, and did not properly sterilize instruments and equipment.

Health inspectors said the violations at the abortion business pose "immediate and serious risk of harm to patients."

It was only the second time state health officials ordered one of the state’s 650 ambulatory health centers closed.

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

Gloria Mozas of Cliffside Park also sued 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. But 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 in 2007.

Metropolitan Medical Associates is one of the biggest abortion facilities in the nation, having done 10,000 abortions last year alone. It was also closed down in 1993 for health and safety issues.

While it was closed, the abortion center referred women to the Women’s Choice abortion center in Hackensack, run by the same owners as MMA. During its closing, it told callers it was "closed for renovations."

MMA has reopened and advertises its abortions prominently on the Internet.

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