Newly-released data shows lack of New York abortion provider inspections

BY MICHAEL RICONDA

 Kermit Gosnell of Philadelphia managed to escape inspection of his abortion facility for years, while maintaining a practice in abominable conditions
Kermit Gosnell of Philadelphia managed to escape inspection of his abortion facility for years, while maintaining a practice in abominable conditions

A Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by the conservative Chiaroscuro Foundation revealed New York has been inconsistent in its inspections of abortion providers, with some locations experiencing no oversight whatsoever in the past decade.

The data revealed out of 25 providers, eight had not been inspected between 2000 and 2012. Five were inspected once during that 12 year period while eight were inspected two or three times. In total, only 45 inspections were conducted over the course of 12 years.

The Department of Health responded that it does not maintain a list of all abortion providers in the state because abortion services are not required for the facilities’ operating tickets. Currently, 225 abortion service providers operate in New York State.

Though the Health Department would not comment further, Assemblywoman Ellen Jaffee, who sits on the State Asssebly’s Health Commission, argued the Foundation’s actions were a means to scare women and limit access to reproductive health services.

“Health centers that specialize in reproductive health care and provide abortions adhere to the same strict regulations that all health care centers providing outpatient procedures must adhere to,” Jaffee stated in an official release. “Any time there is a concern, agencies are able to inspect and investigate health centers to ensure these high standards are met.”

In contrast, county legislator and former Assembly candidate Frank Sparaco maintained it was advisable to have more regular inspections of providers for the health and safety of the women they serve.

“It’s something that should be done regularly,” Sparaco said. “I would be in full support of more thorough and more frequent inspections.”

The Rockland County Times attempted to reach the New York branch of the National Abortion and Reproduction Rights Action League and the New York State Right to Life, but was not able to reach representatives for comment.

The Chiaroscuro Foundation sought the information in response to a scandal involving Kermit Gosnell, who was convicted of three counts of murder for the post-birth killing of infants, 21 late-term abortions and unsanitary, dangerous conditions at his Philadelphia office.

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  1. […] Newly-released data shows lack of New York abortion provider inspections – The Department of Health responded that it does not maintain a list of all abortion providers in the state because abortion services are not required … and more frequent inspections.” The Rockland County Times attempted to reach the New York branch … […]