Missouri health officials lost their case to protect lives from a dangerous Planned Parenthood in St. Louis this week when a state commissioner ruled that the abortion facility can remain open.
Missouri Administrative Hearing Commissioner Sreenivasa Rao Dandamudi ruled against the state Friday, arguing it was wrong to revoke the abortion facility’s license, the AP reports.
The abortion chain and state health officials have been battling in court for months about the St. Louis Planned Parenthood’s license after inspectors found evidence of “multiple life-threatening abortions.”
State health officials said Planned Parenthood put women’s lives at risk in at least four botched abortions and subjected one woman to five procedures to complete her abortion. Additionally, pro-lifers have documented at least 72 occasions when ambulances were called to the abortion facility for women suffering from complications.
Dandamudi, however, argued that the state did not present enough evidence to justify revoking the license, according to the Kansas City Star. He said the abortion facility showed that it met the state license renewal requirements.
“Planned Parenthood has demonstrated that it provides safe and legal abortion care. In over 4,000 abortions provided since 2018, the department has only identified two causes to deny its license,” Dandamudi wrote.
State officials told the AP that they are “reviewing the ruling” to decide whether to appeal.
Responding to the news, pro-life leaders expressed concern for the safety of mothers and babies.
“Unborn children and their mothers face dire health risks – especially during a pandemic – so long as the St. Louis Planned Parenthood is permitted to remain open,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List. “This particular facility’s track record shows an appalling pattern of botched abortions and other violations that prove they are incapable of policing themselves.”
She thanked pro-life Gov. Mike Parson and the state health department for trying to hold the abortion industry accountable for harming women.
Samuel Lee of Campaign Life Missouri also mourned the news. He said the ruling denied state health leaders “the right to protect the health and safety of pregnant women.”
The court battle has drawn national attention because the Planned Parenthood is the only abortion facility left in the state. Late last year, however, the abortion chain secretly built another huge new abortion facility just a few miles away, across the Illinois border.
Last year, Dr. Randall Williams, director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Service, accused Planned Parenthood of trying to vilify his agency for doing its job. He said their decision to revoke the abortion facility’s license was based on serious concerns about patient safety.
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Among these concerns was a botched abortion that took five attempts to finish and the abortion facility’s failure to report the complications, according to the report. In another case, state health inspectors said a woman had to undergo a second abortion after the abortionist failed to recognize that she was pregnant with twins.
Williams previously said they found 30 deficiencies at the abortion facility, and Planned Parenthood only provided a plan to correct four, ABC News reports. According to NBC, problems found during the March 2019 inspection also included “at least one incident in which patient safety was gravely compromised,” “failed surgical abortions in which women remained pregnant” and failure to obtain “informed consent.”
Lawyers for Planned Parenthood, however, contended that the safety concerns are overblown, and state pro-life political leaders just want to shut them down.
LifeNews has extensively chronicled the litany of health problems at the St. Louis Planned Parenthood: