On June 21, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services refused to renew the license of the last abortion facility operating in the state, a Planned Parenthood in St. Louis, due to the facility’s repeated violations of the health code. This despite inspections warning the facility to improve their operating procedures or be shut down.
However, before the Planned Parenthood could be closed due to its record of unsanitary and unsafe practices, Judge Michael Stelzer extended an injunction and allowed the facility to continue operating, despite lacking a license.
Missouri judge rules the state’s only abortion clinic can remain open for at least five more days https://t.co/mRrsNnFrmF pic.twitter.com/ge6dxYdACA
— Reuters U.S. News (@ReutersUS) June 24, 2019
Stelzer is an appointee of Democrat Jay Nixon, a former governor of Missouri. This blatant disregard for the health of women shows just how callous Democrats really are toward women’s health—and just how sacrosanct abortion is to them.
Rife with Health Code Issues and Malpractice
In a press conference the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) gave Friday, Director Randall Williams defended the organization’s decision not to renew Planned Parenthood’s license. Apparently unless they can get a sympathetic judge to suspend medical standards for them, abortion facilities must abide by state regulations. At this facility, DHSS’s latest inspection had revealed 30 repeated citations of medical malpractice, only four of which had been resolved.
The Kansas City Star reported Williams said DHSS decided to nix Planned Parenthood’s license “after a March inspection turned up complications in four surgical abortions. Two of them left patients still pregnant (requiring another procedure), one resulted in an infection and one ended with the patient being rushed to the hospital, bleeding heavily.”
In the news conference Williams said normally inspectors would work with Planned Parenthood to figure out what went wrong and resolve systemic issues like these. But the alleged doctors involved, who are not technically employed by Planned Parenthood, refuse to interview with DHSS so that process could happen as usual.
“It makes a very difficult job for our regulators—in fact unprecedented—to investigate the quality of care if the people who took care of the patient won’t talk to them,” Williams said.
Planned Parenthood Believes It’s Above the Law
An interesting common denominator between last year’s inspections of the Columbia, Missouri and St. Louis, Missouri Planned Parenthood facilities is that the state gave Planned Parenthood generous warnings and instructions on how to follow the state’s health code so they could remain “in business.” Yet over and over, Planned Parenthood acts like it’s above the law and refuses to take the regulations the state has put in place seriously.
Several abortion facilities in Missouri have been shut down due to egregious health code violations. Heritage Foundation reported the Columbia, Missouri facility’s license was due to expire October 2018. The state health department performed a routine inspection a couple of months prior. In that inspection, the department discovered disgusting and dangerous health violations such as moldy, dirty, unsterilized equipment. The state told Planned Parenthood to correct these violations immediately or their license could not be renewed.
When state inspectors visited the facility one month later, not only were those previous violations still uncorrected, but they discovered additional violations. They found “bloody single-use plastic tubing attached to the machine’s glass suction canister that was never disposed of after the last abortion procedure on Sept. 21,” and “found rusty machines and exam room tables with chipped paint, making them impossible to sanitize.”
That Planned Parenthood location had to stop offering abortions because they refused to hire doctors who had admitting privileges at a local hospital, which is required under Missouri law. Ironically, the Heritage Foundation reported, “The abortion giant was campaigning against newly proposed regulations on Missouri abortion clinics when state inspectors discovered a clinic in Columbia, Missouri, was already in violation of existing state regulations.”
According to the DHSS, the clinic in St. Louis was informed a couple of months ago that state inspectors planned on interviewing Planned Parenthood’s physicians because it appeared there were “violations of Missouri law” and “standard care for patient safety.” Still, it appears Planned Parenthood tried to get its license renewed at the last moment and without having complied with Missouri’s health code standards.
Despite their repeated unwillingness to abide by health codes meant to protect women, staff, and babies who survive an abortion attempt, Planned Parenthood had the gall to request a license without meeting the standards to obtain one, and a Missouri judge allowed them to remain operating—without a license. Can anyone imagine this happening with a local urgent care clinic?
This Planned Parenthood facility in Missouri featured unsterilized instruments and botched abortions prompting calls to 911—over and over again—but apparently it’s fine for them to operate facilities that have been proven unsafe for women, all without a license.
Democrats Don’t Care About Women’s Health
While the Missouri DHSS tried to enforce health codes, Democrats in the state—including Planned Parenthood’s legal staff and Judge Stelzer—worked together to ensure abortion remained “available,” even if the abortion facility wasn’t a safe place for women. This is an outright double standard.
Because Planned Parenthood had refused to address the health code violations during March’s inspection, the DHSS failed to renew their license. Planned Parenthood saw this coming and “preemptively sued the week before the license expired and court orders have allowed its clinic to continue to provide abortions.”
Still, Stelzer ordered the DHSS to either approve or reject the application Friday. “A request to reconsider—which Stelzer denied—included the clinic’s inspection records, which showed that DHSS was investigating four failed abortions.” When DHSS filed a document listing Planned Parenthood’s 30 health code deficiencies in court, Planned Parenthood announced “it would defy a health department mandate to perform pelvic exams at least 72 hours prior to an abortion procedure, saying doing so was medically unnecessary and ‘inhumane.’”
DHSS’s license denial could be taken up with the Administrative Hearing Commission, a body that resolves disputes between state agencies and individuals or businesses, or Stelzer could hear the case again and make an additional ruling.
If Democrats in Missouri, whether they be judges, politicians, or Planned Parenthood, cared about women like they always say they do on the campaign trail and in advertisements, they would shut the place down until it abides by the state’s health code. If Planned Parenthood were truly motivated to remain open, as the only abortion provider in Missouri, why wouldn’t it clean up its act?
These latest incidents in Missouri, much like the similarly filthy abortion facility in Virginia a few years ago, and like convicted abortionist Kermit Gosnell’s bloody “house of horrors,” shows Democrats hold abortion far more sacrosanct than the health of women. That should tell you everything you need to know about their real priorities.