Analysis

Medical negligence in Illinois abortion clinics risk women’s health…and lives

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Perhaps the most astounding aspect of the shoddy care of abortion clinics is the claim they all make to provide quality health care for women. A recent example of the hypocrisy in Illinois is not only disgusting, but also dangerous to the women it purports to serve.

The study from Illinois Right to Life revealed:

63% of licensed Illinois women’s clinics have not received a health and sanitary inspection in between two and three-and-a-half-years. The failure of the Department of Public Health to conduct regular health and sanitary inspections leaves women open to the prospect of unsterile surgical tools, dirty operating rooms, incomplete medical attention, infections, and possibly more deaths.

“Illinois Right to Life researchers requested a copy of the Illinois Department of Public Health’s sanitary inspection policy for licensed women’s clinics. No such policy exists.

The report, which has spawned a petition to the Illinois Department of Public Health, reminds us that abortion providers and the government that supports them are often willing to compromise patient safety — even to the point of risking infection and disease  —in the name of easy abortion access. Sanitary instruments? No, thanks. We’ll just float some debris in our suction machine. As long as we suck the baby out, we don’t care what else happens. Need some Motrin? Okay, but you get crumbs with it. We don’t mind storing our TV dinners with human tissue.

Sounds like a bad horror movie or sci-fi episode of a science experiment gone wrong, doesn’t it? But it’s the reality of what was found in abortion clinics in Illinois, where 40% of licensed abortion clinics went between 14 and 17 years without a single health inspection.

It took 66 pages to detail the problems with negligence and incompetence in Illinois clinics. The overarching conclusion is that Illinois operates “substandard women’s reproductive health facilities … with virtually no oversight,” says Illinois Right to Life.

But Illinois does offer oversight for other important medical facilities. You know, like tanning salons, which are inspected every year. As Emily Zender, executive director of Illinois Right to Life, notes, it’s a scary situation because:

…[w]hile news reports warn of MRSA, urge flu vaccination, and praise hospital Ebola training, abortion providers are allowed to perform invasive surgical procedures in unsanitary conditions.

Women in the state of Illinois are not assured medical safety when they walk into an abortion clinic. Receiving an abortion in Illinois might mean a woman loses her life — or her ability to ever reproduce.

Abortion advocates insist that safety standards at abortion clinics are just a method of “anti-abortion control” and not really about safety. But this report shows a troubling trend toward eschewing safety . As the report notes, here’s a summary of what they found in Illinois abortion clinics — facilities that are legally licensed in the state:

  • No registered nurse was employed.
  • Medical personnel were observed retrieving a paper towel from the garbage to cover food trays.
  • Reportedly gynecological cannulas were stained with a brown substance.
  • Suction machine in the operating room contained clear water with specks of floating debris in it.
  • Nine cups with medication in them also contained crumbs.
  • Two boxes of Nuva Rings (inserted contraceptive medication) were stored in the refrigerator with a liter of cola.
  • The facility failed to ensure a pre-anesthesia evaluation was conducted prior to administration of anesthesia on some patients.
  • Biohazard laboratory refrigerator contained fetal tissue alongside medications and food.

If these were outpatient clinics for any other type of surgery or procedure, no one in her right mind would consider the facility.

The truth is, women should be terrified to walk into an Illinois abortion facility where being licensed to do abortions is no guarantee of safety. This report is yet another reminder of the need for all abortion facilities to be closely watched.

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