Two Pennsylvania Abortion Facilities Ordered Closed

State   Steven Ertelt   Apr 24, 2012   |   12:39PM    Harrisburg, PA

The Pennsylvania Department of Health has ordered closed two abortion facilities operated by embattled abortion practitioner and abortion business owner Steven Chase Brigham.

As LifeNews reported, Pennsylvania officials declined to renew the license for the Allentown Medical Services abortion facility at 2200 Hamilton St. The license expired on March 31 and, on Tuesday, DOH officials notified AMS that they were no longer legally authorized to do abortions there.

New information provided to LifeNews today by the pro-life group Operation Rescue shows Allentown Women’s Services was forced to close when it lost its lease. Meanwhile, the Pennsylvania Department of Health revoked its license on April 10 citing “infrastructure failure” after landlord David A. Klein Real Estate terminated the lease, changed the door locks, and stripped the abortion clinic’s name off of the sign in front of the business complex.

According to OR, local pro-life activists report that Brigham’s office and medical equipment is still inside the locked office and no known effort has been made to remove it.

In the closure order, Anna Marie Sossong, the PDH’s deputy secretary for quality assurance wrote: “In addition, I would note that the Department of Health long has witnessed a chronic inability by AMS to comply with the most fundamental statutory and regulatory requirements. These recent events have shown that AMS is unwilling or unable to comply even with the most basic requirements of the law established and designed to assure the health and safety of the patients.”

Meanwhile, American Women’s Services in Pittsburgh saw an order from the state health department as well — ordering it to close April 17 after it failed to report the resignation of its Medical Director.

OR president Troy Newman says the Medical Director at Allentown Women’s Services also resigned earlier this year, but was replaced by long-time Brigham employee Vikram Kaji, an abortion practitioner who has been disciplined for sexually abusing at least three of his patients and indiscriminately prescribing controlled dangerous substances.

Both clinics were ordered by the State to update the American Women’s Services web site to reflect the fact that they are banned from doing abortions, Newman says, but the web site still shows both facilities offering abortions. http:/www.americanwomensservices.com/

Both Pennsylvania abortion clinics have ties to Brigham, who made recent headlines when he was arrested and charged with murder for operating an illegal late-term abortion business in Maryland where police discovered the frozen remains of 35 late-term aborted babies. Those charges were later dropped after an expert witness withdrew from the case under pressure from pro-abortion groups.

“Brigham has openly shown disregard for nearly every law on the books. He is a dangerous man who is not above deceiving authorities about the true nature of his disreputable abortion businesses,” said Newman.

Newman says Brigham’s Pennsylvania medical license is inactive and cannot be renewed. In July, 2010, the state health department ordered Brigham not to have any direct or indirect relationship with an abortion facility in Pennsylvania because of his lengthy record of hiring unlicensed or unqualified physicians and nurses. In response to this order, Brigham transferred ownership of his two Pennsylvania abortion facilities in Allentown and Pittsburgh to his mother, Judith Fitch, who lives in Toledo, Ohio under the name of a newly created non-profit organization called “Rose Health Services.”

Newman added, “His deception in Pennsylvania is finally exposed and his clinics there are closed, but he continues to operate clinics in New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia. This poses an intolerable risk to women. Authorities in all these states are well aware of Brigham and while he is not allowed to practice medicine in any of them legally, they continue to allow him to operate his sleazy abortion mills. This is wrong and we will continue to work through the system to correct this problem until Brigham and his ilk are out of business for good.”

Back in May, inspectors found Allentown Medical Services had multiple health and safety problems that could endanger women’s health and it continues to operate amid the complaints. Officials indicated the abortion facility received citations concerning using unsterilized instruments on women, having drugs and reproductive devices on hand that were past their expiration date. Abortion clinic inspectors also found blood splattered on the walls and floor of a freezer, according to a report the Pennsylvania Health Department made public.

Newman rovided more details about what was found.

“Violations found during an inspection that took place on May 26, 2011, discovered out-of-date medicine, metal instruments with a brown material in the hinges and inside the supposedly sterile packaging, surgical instruments tossed in unsterilized drawers, and surgical instruments stored in a “musty” smelling suitcase in broken wrappers – all of which were considered by employees to be ready for use on patients,” Newman said. “Also discovered was a freezer where “Infectious Waste”, (the remains of aborted babies), was stored that was smeared with what an employee acknowledged was blood and contained a thick layer of frozen blood in the bottom. Dirty recovery room blankets and a dangerous lack of patient monitoring were also documented. No plan has been to correct these egregious violations has been filed, yet the abortion clinic continues to operate.”

The abortion facility operates under the name Allentown Medical Services but it has new owners. It changed hands after Brigham was prohibited from operating in Pennsylvania because of so many botched abortions and violations of health and safety laws for medical clinics. He gave up his Pennsylvania medical licensed because of problems in 1992 but was allowed to operate abortion centers administratively until the state finally clamped down on that practice.

State officials said AMS “failed to maintain a safe and sanitary environment” and devices used in abortions had been sterilized but not wrapped to ensure they stayed that way. Several packages of surgical instruments “had an accumulation of brown debris in the hinge areas and brown staining on the inside of the packages” even though an AMS employee told officials they were sterilized and ready for use.

In July, 2010, Brigham was banned by the State of Pennsylvania from operating or controlling any abortion clinics in Pennsylvania, citing violations that endangered the public. Brigham circumvented the order by transferring ownership of his clinics to Rose Health Services, a company said to be owned by Brigham’s mother.

“There are certainly ongoing relationships between Brigham and the remaining Pennsylvania abortion clinics. We believe those relationships violate the Pennsylvania Health Department’s order,” said Cheryl Sullenger, Senior Policy Advisor for Operation Rescue. “We are looking into what legal action can be taken to stop his dangerous Pennsylvania abortion mills from operating.”

He gave up his Pennsylvania medial licensed because of problems in 1992 but was allowed to operate abortion centers administratively until the state finally clamped down on that practice.

More recently, Brigham operated a secret late-term abortion clinic in Elkton, Maryland, even though he had no license to practice in that state. Brigham would start the late-term abortions at his office in New Jersey, then caravan the laboring women to Elkton where the abortions would be completed. The clandestine abortion scheme was discovered after a woman suffered a life-threatening botched abortion in August, 2010. When police raided the Elkton abortion clinic, they discovered the remains of 35 aborted babies, one of which was 33 weeks gestation.

Brigham was charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of five viable, healthy unborn babies between July 9 and August 13 2010 at what his co-defendant Nicola Riley described as a “secret late-term abortion clinic” in Elkton, Maryland. The murder charges were eventually dismissed.