Half a dozen abortion clinics in Florida and Alabama have had their doors locked after state health boards became concerned by alleged rule and drug violations, including claims of an illegal late-term procedure in Florida.
The Florida Department of Health issued a notice confirming that there was an emergency suspension of the license for James Scott Pendergraft, who runs clinics in Fort Lauderdale and Orlando, for allegedly doing an abortion in the third trimester.
“Temporarily, women are a little bit safer,” Linda Bell, with Florida Right to Life, told WorldNetDaily.
And in Alabama, the state Board of Health suspended the license for Reproductive Health Services of Montgomery because the business lacked a physician with admitting privileges at a local acute care hospital.
It’s been a difficult August for the abortion industry, with an investigation into what appears to have been a homicide at an abortion clinic in Hialeah, Fla., going on, and the pro-life group Operation Rescue taking possession of a Wichita, Kan., building that for decades was used as an abortion business.
Now come the latest complaints over the dangers of abortion businesses.
In Florida, Bell said Pendergraft is known well to those in the pro-life movement.
“He obviously has performed two late-term abortions without getting a second doctor to sign off or doing them in the hospital,” Bell said. “Sadly enough, this is nothing unusual. This is an industry that is based on pure finance. It is big, big money. The later the abortion, the more money the abortionist makes.”
She said the state “thankfully” is doing its job to protect the women of Florida.
John Giles, president of the Christian Coalition of Alabama, had a similar response to the situation in his state.
“The action taken today confirms that the abortion industry is only interested in profits, and not the health care of women before or after an abortion. In fact, women leave abortion facilities all over this state and report the buildings look as if they are furnished from a second hand store and resemble a third world medical facility,” he said.
He told WND that a hearing on the admitting privilege issue is scheduled Sept. 18, when health officials will ask the clinic to defend its actions regarding the regulation.
There, the state order said the abortion clinic did not have any physician with admitting privileges or any contractual arrangement for those services, despite a state requirement for that.
“The failure … is not only a violation of State rules, but also constitutes conduct or practices detrimental to the welfare of the patients of RHS, and constitutes a danger to public health and welfare,” the state said.
Giles said his group and others have been meeting regularly with the health department about improving standards, increasing inspections and enforcing regulations.
He also said the Summit Clinic, in Birmingham, had been closed several weeks ago after a nurse allegedly administered the abortion drug RU-486.
In the Florida case, a report said health officials alleged Pendergraft performed an abortion on a woman seven months pregnant in 2005. The state also alleged he gave her drugs without the proper license.
In a statement, Pendergraft said the procedure was medically necessary and he would fight the state decision, according to a report on WESH2 News.
The report said state investigators concluded the emergency suspension was needed because, “Dr. Pendergraft demonstrated a flagrant disregard for the laws of the state of Florida and a willingness to endanger the lives and health of pregnant patients by performing third-trimester abortions.”
In Florida, those abortions only are legal within a hospital.
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