Health Department Curiously Absent from Abortion Clinics
Those inspected had health violations that posed "immediate and serious risk of harm to patients."
By Leon H Wolf Posted in Life Issues — Comments (17) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »
From the Press of Atlantic City comes a story that could probably have been reported in any number of states - despite a law requiring inspections of all medical clinics once every two years, records revealed that the New Jersey Department of Health had inspected only one of the state's six abortion clinics in the last two years. At least one of the clinics had not been inspected in seven years:
Health officials inspected only one of the state's six licensed abortion clinics in the past two years - despite a requirement that they be investigated every other year - before complaints eventually brought inspectors to two of the clinics, a Press investigation has revealed. Those two clinics were then closed immediately due to health violations that posed "immediate and serious risk of harm to patients."
The investigations of the Alternatives clinic in Atlantic City and Metropolitan Medical Associates in Englewood, Bergen County, marked the first time those clinics had been inspected in six and five years, respectively.
The article notes that New Jersey health officials are having problems getting to all health facilities, but also notes that violations at abortion clinics are especially problematic:
The abrupt closing of the Atlantic City clinic at the end of June exposed locally the potential dangers women face at such unmonitored facilities. But a statewide records request by The Press of Atlantic City shows the problem extends throughout the state. Inspections are sporadic at best and, when they do occur, discovering serious violations is common.
Inspections remain overdue for the three other abortion centers - by as much as seven years in the case of the Planned Parenthood clinic in Shrewsbury, Monmouth County. The last inspection reports for all six clinics recorded violations.
** snip **
Contrary to the division's confidentiality policy, the techniques implemented by inspectors with the Health Department are on display in their public reports, and are clearly thorough. The violations outlined in the six most recent abortion clinic reports are equally extensive.
Although Pilgrim Medical Center in Montclair was the only abortion clinic whose routine inspections were up to date, several state violations were found in 2005. These included providing unspecified medical services without a license and lacking an oxygen supply to patients in one operating room.
Patients' dried blood and blood residue were common discoveries in some of the state's licensed abortion clinics, including the Montclair clinic, where investigators revealed that the base of the clinic's operating tables were "soiled and caked with dried blood" and the floors below the tables were "soiled and stained with blood residue."
Inspectors found dried blood under the leg pads on procedure tables at Atlantic City's Alternatives in June and forceps encrusted in "brownish blood-like residues" at Metropolitan Medical Associates in February.
How does at least one of the clinics respond to these damning findings?
"Abortions aren't really surgery, they aren't sterile procedures," an Alternatives employee told inspectors after being questioned about infection control.
Well. Whatever one feels about the medical and scientific accuracy of the above statement, I feel certain that any establishment that attempted to serve a cheeseburger - also not a sterile procedure - in conditions like those described above would be promptly shut down, perhaps indefinitely. And, this is yet further evidence that abortion is *not* "just another medical procedure," performed by doctors who have the best interests of their patients at heart. I suppose, however, that when a clinic deals in death rather than life, these sorts of things are to be expected.