Kentucky's Last Abortion Clinic Braces For Shutdown

Kentucky's Last Abortion Clinic Braces For Shutdown

Kentucky's Last Abortion Clinic Braces For Shutdown

The state has used the rules to deny Planned Parenthood a license, and is now attempting to revoke EMW's license, claiming the clinic's existing agreements-which, until this March, had been deemed sufficient for several years-do not meet state requirements.

Steve Pitt, attorney for the state, told the court Wednesday that the state is trying to protect women's health by enforcing the law, which has been in place for almost 20 years, the AP reports.

The EMW Women's Surgical Center is suing the southern state for placing what it claims are unreasonably onerous safety requirements that threaten its ability to operate.

A hearing involving the fate of the last abortion clinic in Kentucky began Wednesday with attorneys for the abortion clinic saying there will be no abortions in Kentucky if the state wins.

The Bevin Administration's actions are just one of the numerous cases across the country of local and state governments using petty and obscure methods to try to shut down abortion clinics. The state's abrupt "about-face" - finding the clinic non-compliant - came "out of the blue", the lawsuit said.

EMW and Planned Parenthood of IN and Kentucky, which also is involved IN the lawsuit, are arguing that the state just wants to shut them down, and the regulations are not necessary because abortion complication rates are low.

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"The plaintiff's self-serving statements about the rarity of complications from abortion gloss over the fact that such complications do occur and that transport agreements are important safeguards for women's health in the event of such complications", they said. Bevin's spokeswoman Amanda Stamper told the Associated Press on September 4 that the law in question in the EMW case is necessary and institutes "important measures for ensuring women have the proper life-saving procedures in place in the event of an emergency". Critics said the changes were meant to make it harder to get a state license for abortions.

"Essentially all health-care facilities in Kentucky are required to have such agreements, and it is telling that the abortion industry believes that it alone should be exempt", she added. IN and Kentucky's Planned Parenthoods also joined the lawsuit.

In court Wednesday, a judge heard testimony from a doctor who performs abortions.

The landmark Supreme Court decision of Roe v. Wade, which gives women the right to have an abortion has not been overturned.

The lawsuit is one of two pitting the clinic against the state.

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