Board Delays Hearing on Abortion Practitioner Evading Law

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 8, 2010   |   1:50PM   |   Topeka, KS

The Kansas State Board of Healing Arts has announced it is delaying hearings in a case related to an abortion practitioner who evaded state law by making illegal abortion referrals.

Ann Kristin Neuhaus provided illegal late-term abortion referrals for the slain late-term abortion practitioner George Tiller.

The board filed an eleven-count recommendation this summer against Neuhaus and set hearings on the matter for December 20 and January 11. But Operation Rescue, which filed the original complaint against her, announced today those hearings have been pushed back to April 12.

The full disciplinary hearing, which will be conducted in a trial-like format with testimony expected from witnesses, has been rescheduled for May 3 and is scheduled to last four days.

Operation Rescue’s Cheryl Sullenger filed the original complaint against Neuhaus and Tiller in 2006 for what appeared to be an illegal financial affiliation violating Kansas law. That complaint was amended in February 2007 and is the case that the board is investigating.

The complaint alleges Tiller conducted illegal late-term abortions using Neuhaus as the second concurring physician required by law for post-viability abortions.

However, state law requires a second physician have no financial links to the primary abortion practitioner and OR suggests Neuhaus and Tiller were financially associated.

Tiller was criminally charged and tried for having an illegal financial relationship with Neuhaus, who was the only physician providing the legally mandated second opinion verifying that a pregnancy met the strict exceptions to the Kansas ban on post-viability abortions. Tiller was acquitted of criminal charges in March 2009, but the medical board was pursuing an 11-count disciplinary petition against Tiller based on Sullenger’s complaint at the time of his death.

The petition against Neuhaus also alleges she breached the standard of care in several ways, including failing to perform adequate patient interviews, obtain adequate patient histories, and adequately evaluate the “behavioral or functional impact” of the patient’s condition and symptoms.

It also alleges the abortion practitioner failed to meet the standard of care to the degree of constituting ordinary negligence and failed to keep adequate medical records.

“We know that the Board does not file disciplinary petitions if it is not completely convinced that violations have occurred,” said Sullenger. “We look forward to the resolution of this case and pray it results in the revocation of Neuhaus’ medical license.”

Neuhaus was previously disciplined by the KSBHA in 1999 and 2000 after committing numerous abortion abuses, including an incident where Neuhaus sedated a woman and forced an abortion upon her after she had withdrawn her consent. At that time the Board deemed Neuhaus a danger to the public.

After that disciplining, Neuhaus went to work for Tiller providing the second physician referral for post-viability abortions.