Archive for the Abortion clinic sued Category

Ohio abortionist lies to patient says he cannot remove laminaria or stop abortion

Posted in Abortion clinic, Abortion clinic sued, Abortion complication, Abortion lawsuit, Abortionist, Abortionist and Live Birth with tags , , , , , , , , on July 23, 2014 by saynsumthn

An Ohio abortion doctor has been sued after he told a woman that she could not reverse her decision to abort her child once the procedure had begun.


According to the lawsuit, on March 2010, the woman referred to as SS, who is from West Virginia, traveled to Ohio to receive an abortion. She went to Dr. Martin Ruddock at the Center for Women’s Health, Inc., in Cleveland. SS was in her second trimester of pregnancy.

Abortionist Ruddock first saw SS on March 16, 2010 when she signed six informed-consent forms at his office. The woman claims she signed the forms prior to ever seeing Ruddock and that required counseling was not provided 24 hours in advance of the abortion procedure.

SS was informed that because of her stage of pregnancy, Ruddock would have to first place dilators, known as laminaria, into her cervix during the first two days, and that the abortion would not be
completed until the third day, which would have been March 18, 2010.

On March 16, 2010, Ruddock examined SS and placed three laminaria into her cervix. During the procedure, SS experienced pain and uncertainty and indicated that she wanted to stop.

Ruddock informed her that it was not possible. According to SS, Ruddock informed her that her water had already broken; that he could not stop; that she could not revoke consent once the procedure had begun; and that if the procedure were stopped, the child would suffer from mental retardation. The procedure continued, and the laminaria were inserted. An abortion procedure report was used to document the procedure.

The next day, SS went to another doctor who removed the laminaria and informed her that her water had not been broken. On March 18, 2010, SS returned to Ruddock’s office and was given a refund after signing a “laminaria removal release.”

SS’s pregnancy resulted in the birth of a healthy baby.

SS sued Ruddock and the trial court granted Ruddock’s motion and dismissed the complaint and all claims raised therein with prejudice. This was based on the language of the laminaria release that the patient signed. So SS took her case to the Ohio Supreme Court which noted that the language in the release did not exempt Ruddock from liability concerning violations of Ohio’s informed consent law, medical record release laws, fraud and misrepresentation claims regarding the pregnancy itself, or spoliation of evidence claims. In May of 2014 the Ohio Supreme Court found there were reasonable grounds for the appeal and reversed the lower court’s decision.

Read decision here.

NAF abortion clinic closed then allowed to re-opened by state hired doc that made racist comments

Posted in Abortion clinic closed by state, Abortion clinic dirty, Abortion Clinic Inspections, Abortion clinic sued, Abortion Clinic Worders, Abortion Racism, Abortionist, Abortionist Racist with tags , , , , , , , , on June 3, 2013 by saynsumthn


State health officials say they will closely monitor operations at a southeast Charlotte abortion clinic that has reopened after briefly losing its license.

A Preferred Women

A Preferred Woman’s Health Center on Latrobe Drive reopened May 15 after the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services lifted its order suspending operations. State investigators in April revoked the clinic’s license after determining that staffers were orally administering the liquid drug methotrexate, which is used to induce abortions.

The drug is meant to be injected or taken in pill form, according to the state report and health officials.

A Preferred Ab Clinic051313-latrobe-closed

State records show A Preferred Woman’s Health Center is one of only two abortion clinics in the state to have its license suspended in the past 14 years.

During that time, the Charlotte clinic has been shut down twice. The clinic’s license was revoked in February 2007 after state investigators found as many as 16 safety and regulatory issues, documents show.

Before then the only other clinic suspended by the state was A Woman’s Choice of North Carolina in Greensboro in 1999.

A Preferred Woman’s Health Center was allowed to resume operations after the state received affidavits showing that physicians and staffers had changed their policies and “ceased the use of methotrexate in an oral manner,” documents show.

“There will be ongoing monitoring of A Preferred Woman’s Health Center to ensure compliance,” said a DHHS official.

When reached by phone, a clinic secretary told the Observer that owner Lois Turner declined to comment.

The most recent investigation of the Charlotte clinic began after state health officials received a complaint that an injectable version of methotrexate had been administered orally. Health officials say that is dangerous to patients and ineffective.

“This is the first case in which the route of administration (of methotrexate) was contrary to the manufacturer’s recommendations,” the DHHS official said.

The medication had been drawn up in a syringe and then put into a cup for patients to drink, according to a clinic nurse interviewed by state investigators.

In one case, a 19-year-old woman came to the clinic for an abortion procedure and was given methotrexate orally. A month later, she returned to the clinic, still pregnant, and had to undergo a surgical abortion procedure, according to state documents.

Dr. Mitchell Creinin, a California-based obstetrician who was among the first to study methotrexate abortion procedures, questioned the practices at the Charlotte clinic.

“There is sufficient data to be using methotrexate but not the way they used it,” said Creinin, who is the chairman for the University of California Davis’ Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. “It’s no different than hearing about an orthopedic surgeon cutting off the wrong leg.”

But National Abortion Federation medical director Dr. Matthew Reeves said the Charlotte clinic’s use of methotrexate wasn’t as risky as Creinin implied.

A Preferred NAF

The National Abortion Federation, a professional association representing abortion providers, recommends A Preferred Woman’s Health Center as one of three abortion clinics in Charlotte.

Reeves noted that a Canadian physician a couple of decades ago studied the effectiveness of orally giving patients liquid methotrexate to induce abortions. That study found the method to be safe and effective, Reeves said.

But Creinin said one study is not sufficient to support the drug’s use in that way.


A Preferred Ab Clinic051313-latrobe-closed

A Preferred Order to Close

Inspectors from the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services conducted a surprise visit to Latrobe April 19-20 and did additional investigation work in late April and early May.

They found “that conditions at A Preferred Women’s Health Center, LLC, present an imminent danger to the health, safety and welfare of the clients and that emergency action is required to protect the clients.”

They found that the facility was improperly administering chemical abortions and improperly examining post-abortive women before they were discharged from surgery. The same day they issued their report, May, 10, state regulators ordered A Preferred Women’s Health Center shut down “no later than 5 o’clock p.m.” that day, saying the decision was “emergency action … required to protect the clients.”

Read the full report: HHS report on Latrobe 5-10-13.pdf

For more on closing go here and Here

A Preferred Women’s Health Center is a chain of three abortion facilities, with locations also in Raleigh and in Augusta, Ga. Its website estimates that its staff has performed abortions on more than 100,000 women over the past 20 years.

An abortionist at A Preferred Women’s Health Center in Charlotte, Dr. Ashutosh Ron Virmani, OB/GYN, has received several reprimands during his medical career in North Carolina, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Presbyterian Hospital in Charlotte suspended his privileges there in 1995. Virmani has a license to practice medicine in North Carolina.

There are three abortion facilities in Charlotte, among at least seven located within the area of the Diocese of Charlotte. Besides the facility at 3220 Latrobe Drive, there is Family Reproductive Health at 700 E. Hebron St. and Carolina Center for Women at 421 N. Wendover Road.

Dr. Ashutosh Ron Virmani
image from facebook

Abortionist Ashutosh Ron Virmani kills children at A Preferred Women’s Health Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.

On July 26 pro-life activists paid a visit to Virmani’s home asking him to repent. The rant that followed was shocking, revealing at least in part what motivates Virmani: overt racism – culminating with his accusation, “Why don’t you adopt those ugly black babies?”

According to NEWSMEAT, this RACIST Abortion doctor is a HUGE democrat Contributor:

Virmani was born in India. He came to the United States in 1976 and attended medical school in New Jersey between 1981 and 1985. It is strange that Virami was so racist about the black babies he loves to abort, because RACISM was his exact claim against a hospital that removed his clinical privileges. According to the AMA news, Presbyterian Hospital and Presbyterian Hospital Matthews, part of Novant Health Inc., summarily suspended Dr. Virmani’s staff membership and clinical privileges after the hospital reviewed a case in which the ob-gyn punctured a patient’s iliac artery during a laparoscopic procedure in 1994.

Dr. Virmani said that that is a known possible complication, according to the documents. Dr. Virmani says his privileges were taken away because of his race and national origin. He was born in India. He came to the United States in 1976 and attended medical school in New Jersey between 1981 and 1985.

He said the hospital treated non-Indian physicians differently and disciplined them less harshly. Dr. Virmani noted that the state medical board did not take action against him and that independent reviewers found that he met the standard of care in the cases the hospital said were problematic.

The hospital defended its action and said that the court shouldn’t open up the peer review records.

A portion of the lawsuit that followed reads:

Dr. Virmani is an obstetrician-gynecologist who was granted medical staff membership and clinical privileges at Presbyterian Hospital and Presbyterian Hospital Matthews (collectively,”Presbyterian”).1 During a laparoscopic procedure in 1994 at Presbyterian Hospital, Virmani inadvertently punctured the iliac artery of a patient, creating a life-threatening emergency…Based on the Committee’s report, Novant suspended Virmani’s privileges, pending a review by Presbyterian’s Medical Board. At Virmani’s request, the Hearing Committee of the Medical Board, which is composed of three physicians, conducted a full hearing on November 21, 1995. Following that hearing, the Medical Board voted to terminate Virmani’s medical staff privileges. Presbyterian’s Board of Trustee’s upheld that decision on January 19, 1996.

Virmani’s medical license was “reprimanded” in this case. Read lawsuit here

In 2005, The North Carolina Medical Board reprimanded Virmani’s license after he was found to have presigned prescription pads and the staff at the clinic was using them for non-patients.

Is Virmani a racist? We will ask that in the same manner he asked this about Presbyterian Hospital, in a protest letter written by abortionist Virmani and entitled: “DID PRESBYTERIAN HOSPITAL DISCRIMINATE? YOU DECIDE!”, the abortionists writes, “Those in control at Presbyterian hospital used their enormous resources and power to squash me like a gnat. They have done so not because of the quality of my care but because of where I came from. They are thriving while I am starving. I hope these people sleep well at night knowing that they have destroyed the professional and personal life of a young physician beyond repair because of his national origin.”

“Ugly Black Babies?” Seriously- you do not want you taxes to go to allowing Ugly Black Babies to be born- I’d call that pretty darn Racist, and I hope You do not Sleep Well for that !

Racism from abortion is no secret – watch the documentary film Maafa21 for more racist connections to abortion.

A Little more about the abortion clinic that hires a RACIST:

The drug’s manufacturer, the assistant director of the Carolina Poison Center and the medical adviser for the Division of Health Service Regulation don’t recommend the oral administration of methotrexate.

Planned Parenthood, which refers women to local abortion providers, does not refer patients to A Preferred Woman’s Health Center and is “not affiliated with that clinic at all,” according to spokeswoman Melissa Reed.

Turner, the clinic owner, also operates clinics with the same name in Raleigh and Augusta, Ga.

Both of those clinics remained open during the Charlotte office’s recent suspension, documents show.

Read more here:

Planned Parenthood abortionist – Partner had abortion patient die – testimony at Gosnell trial

Posted in Abortion clinic sued, Abortion Clinic Worders, Abortion complication, Abortion death, Abortion injury, Abortionist, child predator, Kermit Gosnell, Planned Parenthood Employee with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2013 by saynsumthn


Planned Parenthood Abortionist Charles Benjamin testified that he is one of about four abortion providers left in the city since Kermit Gosnell’s arrest two years ago. Gosnell, 72, is charged with causing the deaths of a patient and seven babies who prosecutors say were born alive. Defense lawyer Jack McMahon has maintained that no babies were born alive.

Benjamin, who said he has performed 40,000 abortions over a 30-year career, testified Monday that he doesn’t do them after 21 weeks, or three weeks under the 24-week limit in Pennsylvania. Benjamin also said he performs abortions after 17 weeks gestation in a hospital. That’s in contrast to Gosnell, who performed about 1,000 abortions a year — virtually all at his clinic. He shows up on Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania financial reports in 2007 and 2008 and 2008 2009 2010 racking in hundreds of thousands of dollars each year from the tax funded Planned Parenthood abortion clinic.

On cross-examination, Benjamin did testify that his partner once had an abortion patient die of sepsis.

Who is Benjamin’s partner?

Apparently Charles Benjamin testified that his “PARTNER” was involved in an abortion related death. Was that abortion death reported? Who is the abortionist “partner” who was involved in that death? Well…the media report linked here did not say…..but- records online with Planned Parenthood and the other clinic where Benjamin performed abortions gives us an indication who his many “PARTNERS” were:

Beverly M VaughnOne possibility is a doctor listed as board member of the clinic he works for. According to a 2010 990 Dr. Beverly M Vaughn , M.D. is a board member of Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania. She has no complaints on file with the state, and we do not know if this is who Benjamin was referring to.

PPSEPA Benjamin Charles

Another possible “PARTNER” is – Lee Anthony Trip, MD who was listed along with Charles Benjamin on the 2010990 as a physician at the Planned Parenthood clinic.

Trip earned a whopping $566,334 in ONE YEAR working for the TAX FUNDED ABORTION GIANT !

Anthony Trip MD- who was employed by Planned Parenthood has a State Action on file – read here and at that time had performed over 8000 abortions. He dates back to at least yearsat the abortion giant’s center. He has been raking in the BIG BUCKS $$$$ for years: (2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 ). Trip earned MAJOR BUCKS with the tax funded abortion giant each year!

Charles David Benjamin earned a whopping $329,810 doing abortions for Planned Parenthood.

Apparently Charles Benjamin was involved in some sort of court case involving a teen who sued him, in this CASE: Stephanie Carter v. Charles D. Benjamin, D.O. a teenager was transported across state lines for an abortion, and suffered issues of standard of care, informed consent, and psychological trauma following abortion. here – Stephanie Carter, at the age of 17 years, had the induced abortion performed by Dr Charles Benjamin. On the consent form, the words “breast cancer” did not appear. Stephanie Carter filed a lawsuit against Dr Benjamin alleging, in part, that Benjamin did not inform her of the breast cancer risks of that induced abortion.

And according to World Magazine, (State of the states: 1/10/2004), “When a Pennsylvania teenager , filed by Stephanie Carter, 19, of Hatboro, Pa, (“Sarah,” as she was referred to in a lawsuit) became pregnant at 16, a high-school guidance counselor told her how to get around all that: All Sarah needed to do was cross the state line. The counselor then arranged for the teen a secret abortion in neighboring New Jersey, where no laws require parental involvement or informed consent. That was in 1998. In 2000, after being diagnosed with abortion-related post-traumatic stress syndrome and learning that studies link abortion with breast cancer (ABC connection), Sarah sued abortionist Charles Benjamin and the Cherry Hill Women’s Center in Cherry Hill, N.J. Her lawsuit alleged that Dr. Benjamin and his clinic should be held liable for violating Pennsylvania laws meant to protect her. In October 2003, on the eve of trial, the defendants settled out of court, agreeing to pay an undisclosed sum to cover Sarah’s post-abortion counseling and future health care Her parents, Harold and Marie Carter, already have settled a lawsuit against the Hatboro-Horsham School District. They claimed that
her guidance counselor advised her to get an abortion in suburban Cherry Hill, N.J., where state parental notification laws aren’t as strict as Pennsylvania’s.


Another “Partner” works with Benjamin who performs abortions at his private office Bruce Berger, MD where he does abortions thru 20 weeks.


Here On December 29, 1999, Antoinette Hartdegen filed a medical malpractice action
against Appellee, Bruce Berger, M.D. (“Berger”)1 claiming that Berger failed to obtain her informed consent before performing a tubal ligation/
sterilization procedure. Bruce Berger performed the surgery after he performed an abortion because she claimed she was a rape victim. After the abortion she received the Tubal Ligation and suffered complications which resulted in a hospital stay for emergency bowel repair. The jury ruled in favor of Berger.


One more possibility is Mark_Woodland1A 2010 Board Member is Mark B. Woodland, M.D

ANOTHER would be Paul Copit, MD who worked for Planned Parenthood in 2006 taking in $61,300. He appears to still be listed as with PP. Copit supervised Anthony Trip after he was disciplined by the state. (here)

We may never know just who Charles Benjamin was referring to when he testified that his “Partner” was involved in the death of an abortion patient. But, one thing we do know is that women DO DIE from abortions and that is not a rare event. For proof go to

Planned Parenthood Delaware under investigation for unsafe abortion clinic after several emergencies

Posted in 911 calls, Abortion clinic sued, Abortion Clinic Worders, Abortion complication, Abortion injury, Abortion pill, Abortionist, Planned Parenthood Employee, Planned Parenthood Investigated with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 10, 2013 by saynsumthn

Baltimore Wilmington PP

Delaware Planned Parenthood of Baltimore in Wilmington has announced that abortion procedures are on hold and a local news station has announced that the tax funded clinic is under investigation by the state after two staffers say the clinic was not sterile and unsafe. The story broke last night. At least five Planned Parenthood patients have been rushed to the ER. In addition, one doctor and two nurses have “mysteriously left” as well, according to reports.

According to the Planned Parenthood website, surgical abortions will be referred to “another provider” but chemical abortions will still be provided:

PP No Ab Wilmington

Two former nurses from a Planned Parenthood in Baltimore who both quit spoke with a local news station about what they saw inside.

PP Baltimore Jane Mitchel W

Jayne Mitchell-Werbrich, former employee said, “It was just unsafe. I couldn’t tell you how ridiculously unsafe it was.”

Werbrich alleges conditions inside the facility were unsanitary. “He didn’t wear gloves,” said Werbrich.

Who is HE?? We do not know for sure, but records indicate the medical director for Planned Parenthood is Eric Schaff:


PPDE 2006

Medical Director Eric Schaff took home $100,000 in 2006 ( here)

In 1997, Dr. Schaff was trained by Planned Parenthood of New York City in surgical abortion. “I felt inadequate because I had to rely on other physicians for medication abortion complications. Since I learned these surgical skills, I feel empowered as a clinician because I can provide complete reproductive healthcare.”

Apparently- this Planned Parenthood cannot find experienced abortionists, they have to request medical students !!

PP Wilmington DE

And in 2006, a woman sued Planned Parenthood after an abortion they performed landed her in the hospital with an ectopic pregnancy. The doctor on record at that time was GAILYN B. THOMAS, M.D Read here.

PPDE 2004

PP Baltimore Joyce 1

Another former employee, Joyce Vasikonis told Action News, “They were using instruments on patients that were not sterile.” The former nurses claim that a rush to get patients in and out left operating tables soiled and unclean.

Werbrich said “It’s not washed down, it’s not even cleaned off. It has bloody drainage on it.”

“They could be at risk of getting hepatitis, even AIDS,” added Vasikonis. Both of these nurses said, they quit to protect their own medical licenses, stunned by what they called a meat-market style of assembly-line abortions.

Vasikonis said, “I felt I could be held liable if a patient was harmed.”

Planned Parenthood needs to close its doors, it’s needs to be cleaned up, the staff needs to be trained, said Werbrich.”

According to the news station, Since January 4th, five patients allegedly have been rushed from the facility to the emergency room, again placing the clinic in the spotlight.

Pro-lifers have documented several of those incidents:

Planned Parenthood Delaware2013In February of 2013, a woman was taken by stretcher out the back of Planned Parenthood in Wilmington to a local emergency medical center following a botched abortion. She was loaded into a St. Francis Hospital ambulance, according to Rae Stabosz of Newark, Delaware…It was the third such event witnessed by pro-lifers in a two-year period.

Operation Rescue has published newly obtained 911 recordings of two medical emergencies at Planned Parenthood in Wilmington, Delaware, which took place on February 8, and 16, 2013.

In both cases, patients were transported to a local hospital with abortion complications that could not be managed by abortionists and nurses who attended the women at the clinic.

The 911 recordings were obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests made by a participant in a local 40 Days for Life campaign with the assistance of Operation Rescue. While prayer vigil participants were present for the incident on the 16th, they were unaware that another medical emergency had taken place at that same Planned Parenthood abortion clinic just 8 days earlier until they received the open records files.

“The 911 recordings are important because they expose the inconvenient truth that abortion isn’t as safe as the abortion cartel would have you believe,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue and Pro-Life Nation. “Women are maimed and killed by shoddy abortionists on a regular basis, but it is covered up by the clinics, the abortion lobby, and the media. Public records tear way the curtains of secrecy that enables abortionists to abuse women. This helps us warn the public and hold abortionists accountable for their actions.”

Patient 1 –February 8, 2013

February 8, 2013, Planned Parenthood called 911 at 1:30 p.m. to ask for assistance for a patient that was unconscious and struggling to breathe. Despite the presence of two physicians and three nurses, her condition still required emergency assistance from paramedics.

The caller indicated that they were using an emergency non rebreather on the patient, which is a mask with a flat bag that used in emergency situations to provide oxygen to the patient.

However, the non rebreather seemed inadequate, because the caller told the dispatcher that they were “getting ready to bag” the patient. “Bagging” a patient is done with a hand-held device used to provide positive pressure ventilation to a patient who is not breathing or who is breathing inadequately. It is an emergency resuscitative measure.

Paramedics and an ambulance were dispatched to the scene. The outcome of this patient’s medical emergency is unknown.

Patient 2 – February 16, 2013

A second medical emergency at Planned Parenthood in Wilmington, which was witnessed by pro-life activists, took place on February 16. Video was taken by Rae Stabosz during a 40 Days for Life prayer vigil that shows a woman on a gurney with a possible IV bag containing plasma or other blood products.

The partially-redacted 911 recording confirmed that the patient suffered heavy bleeding. The Planned Parenthood employee that placed the call opted for response by paramedics instead of a simple ambulance transfer, indicating that the patient needed emergency care.

She was rushed to St. Francis Hospital for emergency treatment.

These incidents comprise the third and fourth medical emergencies observed or documented by prayer vigil participants at Planned Parenthood in Wilmington over a two-year period.

“We wonder – how often does it happen when we are not there?” asked Stabosz.

PlannedParenthoodWilmingtonAmbulanceMarch 13 2013 In March of 2013 a woman told protesters her daughter was bleeding from an incomplete abortion which Planned Parenthood had performed on her days earlier was taken to the emergency room. Then, at approximately 1:00PM witnesses documented an ambulance arriving at the same Planned Parenthood, and removing another patient.

Proabort Attack March 2013Pro-Abort Woman Attacks

According to Operation Rescue, A 63-year old Catholic grandmother of 12 was violently attacked outside this Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Wilmington, Delaware, as she filmed the fourth abortion injury there in less than five weeks.

According to reports, Rae Stabosz had been praying outside the Planned Parenthood clinic when a woman and her mother came to the clinic. Rae learned that the woman was suffering complications to an abortion she received on March 8. Rae persuaded them to go to St. Francis hospital where it was discovered that aborted baby body parts, including a leg and foot, had been left behind by the abortionist. The woman required additional surgery and was referred to legal counsel.

Rae left Planned Parenthood to attend mass, and when she returned to the Planned Parenthood, she was shocked to see that yet another medical emergency was in progress. As she was filming the incident with her cell phone, a young woman came out of the Planned Parenthood clinic and violently attacked Rae, knocking her down and taking away her phone.


The attacker took Rae’s phone inside the clinic and gave it to a Planned Parenthood worker. Rae immediately ran into the clinic, retrieved her phone, then returned to the street where she continued to film the gurney with the injured patient, covered head to toe in blankets and sheets, being loaded into the ambulance.

The police soon arrived and Rae made a police report, but the attacker has fled the scene. At this writing, she remained at large.

Rae began to feel the effects of the attack, and another ambulance was summoned to transport her to the same hospital where the two Planned Parenthood patients were receiving treatment. Rae was treated and released with minor injuries.

Action News has learned during our investigation that one doctor and two more nurses at the clinic have mysteriously left.

Lawsuit claims Planned Parenthood left baby parts in patient after abortion w/o anesthesia

Posted in Abortion clinic sued, Abortion complication, Abortionist, Planned Parenthood lawsuit, Planned Parenthood rich off taxpayers with tags , , , , , , , on February 21, 2013 by saynsumthn

2013: A woman has filed suit against Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains and one of its doctors, claiming the abortion facility forced her to undergo an abortion without anesthesia and then left part of her baby’s body inside of her. The lawsuit alleges that 40-year-old Ayanna Byer changed her mind about the abortion after Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs could not provide her with the agreed-upon intravenous anesthesia for pain, but the abortionist proceeded with the abortion anyway. Attorneys for the woman say that once the abortion was complete, Byer was sent home but ended up in an emergency room two days later because the abortionist had botched the procedure. Below is partial statement from an ER physician who treated the women at the hospital. ( H/T Life News)

Planned Parenthood 2013 Colorado Springs

“These are my concerns,” the doctor’s statement continues. “No practicing physician can maintain privileges to practice and perform surgery if they do not provide specific coverage for their patients in case of a complication. It is considered ‘abandonment’ of your patient. It is not acceptable to refer your patients to the Emergency Department and assume the on-call doctor will take care of any complications and assume all the risk associated with the complications. It is medically inappropriate for a physician to remove products of conception and not confirm the diagnosis with pathology. I know of no physician or hospital that would allow the removal of a specimen of this nature and assume what the diagnosis was by just ‘looking’ at it.”

According to the following abortionist works for Planned Parenthood

SAVITA GINDE: Savitaginde-pic-from-ohio-app2

In 2010 alone Savita Ginde, as the Medical Director of Planned Parenthood took in over $269,000 in salary….

2010 PP Rocky Mountains

Here is a 2009 990 showing the types of salaries these incompetent people make:


Their 2010 990 is here

Some additional info on this organization in 2012:

Monica McCafferty Director of Marketing and Communications, Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains

Yesterday, Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains reacted to a Colorado Springs Gazette editorial declaring that the organization is probably worse than Penn State when it comes to covering up child sexual abuse; see our previous coverage below. Since then, Planned Parenthood has sent more info intended to dispel “myths” attacks like the editorial tend to perpetuate.

The editorial, written by onetime Westword profile subject Wayne Laugesen, argued that Planned Parenthood operators routinely fail to report evidence of sexual abuse against minors who call the outfit for services. Planned Parenthood spokeswoman Monica McCafferty told us that local policy calls for the termination of any employee who doesn’t inform authorities about possible crimes, adding that no such incidents have taken place to her knowledge. Late yesterday, she reinforced the assertion with this statement:

While federal and state privacy laws prohibit us from discussing information related to any patient, we can state unequivocally that we maintain and enforce a zero-tolerance policy with respect to any failure to report child abuse and neglect as required by the Colorado Children’s Code. We regularly train our employees on their reporting obligations and we actively audit our own practices and procedures to make certain they are followed.

Well that statement doesn’t seem to pan out when you listen to actual taped phone calls to Planned Parenthood in Colorado and around the nation, and how they handle teh request for an abortion by a 14 year old child admitting she was impregnated by a 22 year old man !

719 / 475-7162
(Partial Transcript) Listen to actual audio here
CALLER: Oh. Well, could I ask you real quick? I’m just worried about
getting an abortion, because my friend told me that — like I’m going to be 14 next
month, and she said that you guys would have to tell my parents. But my
boyfriend’s 22. Could he just sign — is he old enough to sign whatever it is and
you wouldn’t have to tell anybody?
CLINIC: You’re 14 and your boyfriend is 22?
CALLER: Well, I’ll be 14 next month.
CLINIC: So you’re 13.
CALLER: Uh-huh.
CLINIC: Legally that’s statutory rape, and if you were to express that to
someone at our clinic we would definitely have to report it.
CALLER: Oh. But what should I do then?
CLINIC: You don’t have to have parental consent to come here for an
abortion. But like I said, if you express it to someone in the clinic and we
document that, then legally we have to report it.
CALLER: So should somebody else bring me then?
CLINIC: I would suggest that.

2030 E 20TH AVE.
DENVER, CO 80205
303 / 321-2458
(Partial Transcript- Listen to Actual Audio here)

CALLER: The thing is, I’m going to be 14 later on this month, and my friend
said that you guys would have to tell my parents. But my boyfriend’s 22. Is he
old enough to take care of it, and you wouldn’t have to tell anybody?
CLINIC: You’re 13 years old right now?
CLINIC: No. Hold on just a second, hon.
CALLER: All right.
CLINIC: What we would like to do to get you in here to kind of see where
you’re at in terms of — there’s no such thing as parental notification, but we can
kind of just figure out what’s going on with your situation and the fee and all
that kind of stuff, and to explain what happens during an abortion and all that.
CALLER: Me and my boyfriend were talking about all this. And he said he
would pay cash for everything. But we don’t want anyone to know about us. Would
he have to fill out any forms or sign anything if he was paying for it?
CLINIC: Yeah, sure. Let me find out for you. Hold on.
(Short pause)
CLINIC: Appointments for you and all your information would be confidential.
CALLER: Okay. So my boyfriend wouldn’t have to sign anything?
CLINIC: No, he doesn’t sign anything. It doesn’t have anything to do with

(Later in conversation):
CALLER: Well, I just don’t want anyone to know about me and my boyfriend.
My friend said that since I’m going to be 14 later on this month that my parents
have to know about all this. But my boyfriend’s 22
, and he said that he would take
care of everything. So would that be all right and you wouldn’t have to tell

Later on Planned Parenthood gives the teen being abused by a 22 year old adult an out- call another location and keep quiet:

CLINIC: Sure. But you understand that the government or the Social Services
does require that we report that because they consider that — because you’re a
teen and he’s an adult.
CALLER: Well, what can happen?
CLINIC: I don’t know what Social Services does once we report that. But
that’s entirely up to you if you want to be seen here. But we’re required to do
that. I can give you referrals of other places if you’re interested. But the
first order of business for you is to really have a pregnancy test.
CALLER: Yeah. Well, if I didn’t tell anybody about him, would that be all
right, and you wouldn’t have to say anything then?
CLINIC: Well, probably not being truthful is going to be a problem, but
that’s up to you to decide what it is that you want to do. I wouldn’t make any
recommendations to you on that score.
CLINIC: But let me give you some other providers too that might be helpful.
First you want to give yourself a pregnancy test.
Mayfair is in Aurora. And that’s 303-696-9761. That’s another office. Dr.
Bernstein, and that’s 303-399-6120.
CALLER: What was that last one?
CLINIC: 399-6120.
CALLER: Okay? So if I don’t tell them anything, that would be better?
CLINIC: That wouldn’t be an advice that I would give you.

In 2011- the TOTAL CONTRIBUTIONS for Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains was $ 3,739,003

A 2008 990 from Planned Parenthood reveals the following:

Vicky Cowart, president and CEO took in a whopping $217,701 in base compensation plus $30, 525 in bonus and incentive compensation , $7447.00 in deferred compensation, $8401.00 in nontaxable benefits – for a grand total of $264,077

John Duffy CFO of Finance took in $128,752 plus $8854 in other compensation

Gail Kelley COO/ Senior VP took in $138,401 plus $5123 in other compensation

Jodell Allen Physician took in $171,853 in base compensation , $5153.00 in deferred compensation, $4809.00 in nontaxable benefits, for a grand total of $181,818

Savita Ginde worked on 20 hours a week as Medical Director to earn $253,503 in base compensation $7605.00 in deferred compensation $5153.00 in nontaxable benefits, for a grand total of $266,251

Law firm files complaint against Planned Parenthood after women sues for botched abortion

Posted in Abortion clinic sued, Abortion complication, Abortionist, Planned Parenthood lawsuit with tags , , , , , , on September 19, 2012 by saynsumthn

— An Alabama abortionist is being sued for medical malpractice in civil court action, along with the Planned Parenthood where he works. Accused of a botched abortion, Dr. Aqua Don E. Umoren and Planned Parenthood are on the receiving end of complaints that will be filed by the Life Legal Defense Foundation today. They include a complaint against Planned Parenthood at the Alabama Department of Public Health, and a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

The Complaint Reads:

This is a complaint regarding the Planned Parenthood of Birmingham (hereafter PPB) abortion facility, in Jefferson County, Alabama, which was responsible for a botched ectopic pregnancy abortion on August 20, 2010. From January 2010 until January 2011

PPB was put on probation by the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) for non-reporting of potential statutory rape, among other things.

During the probation period, ADPH was responsible for conducting on-site inspections of the business to ensure full regulatory compliance with StateBoard of Health Rules for Abortion or Reproductive Health Centers.

Aqua Don E. Umoren, M.D., who most often does abortions at AWCRA in Huntsville, AL, has been recognized as the abortionist involved in this case. Umoren is being sued individually and in his official capacity as a physician agent.It has come to our attention, that during the January 2010 to January 2011 period that PPB was on ADPH probation, PPB was negligent in failing to detect the ectopic pregnancy of Roberta Clark when she procured an abortion on August20, 2010:

1) the ultrasound technician failed to note or document that her uterus was empty;
2) Aqua-don Umoren M.D. purportedly conducted a pelvic examination during which he should have observed that she did not have anintrauterine pregnancy, yet his records show that he failed to detect the empty uterus;
3) Umoren ignored the fact that no fetal parts were present in the aborted material
4) Planned Parenthood of Birmingham failed to note the Pathology Lab Report that stated no fetal parts were present, and Planned Parenthood of Birmingham failed to notify the woman of this dangerous situation

Ms. Clark first came to Planned Parenthood in Birmingham on August 10, 2010 for “pregnancy testing, evaluation, and termination of pregnancy.” According to the complaint, on August 20,2010, the ultrasound showed “estimated fetal gestational age of 8 weeks 4 days.” There is noway that an adequately trained ultrasound technician would have detected an intrauterine pregnancy in Ms. Clark. It apparent that the ultrasound technician was improperly trained and/or falsified records in order to justify performing the abortion on Ms. Clark and taking her money

Following the ultrasound, “plaintiff underwent a suction curettage procedure to terminate plaintiff’s pregnancy.” “The suction curettage procedure was performed by Dr. E Umoren at defendants’ Planned Parenthood clinic in Birmingham Alabama.” “…Dr Umoren knew or should have known that suction curettage procedure did not result in termination of plaintiff’s pregnancy and that plaintiff was still pregnant after the procedure because no fetal tissue was identified in tissue specimen sent to pathology on August 20, 2010.” Additionally, “… plaintiff continued to have bleeding accompanied with nausea, vomiting and lower quadrant pain” after the suction curettage procedure.”On September 14, 2010, plaintiff presented to emergency department of BMC Princeton Medical Center in Birmingham Alabama with complaints of nausea, vomiting and left lower quadrant pain… following physical examination and ultrasound exam at the emergency department of BMC Princeton Medical Center, the ultrasound showed evidence of a 13-week gestation that was extra-uterine involving left adnexa (fallopian tube), this finding prompt edemergency admission of plaintiff for surgical intervention, pain management and treatments.””On September 15, 2010, at BMC-Princeton… plaintiff underwent a laparoscopy with conversion to laparatomy in which plaintiff’s left tube was removed with the 13-week fetus and placenta.

The plaintiff notes suffering the following adverse effects: “ruptured fallopian tube as a resultof ectopic pregnancy, hospitalization to undergo painful surgical operations to treat rupturedectopic pregnancy which said operations included laparoscopy with conversion to laparatomywith left salpingectomy, lysis of pelvic adhesions, removal of a 13-week extrauterine pregnancy and placement of a Jackson-Pratt drain, Loss of tube resulting in infertility, bleeding,vomiting, nausea, physical pain, mental anguish and emotional distress, medical expenses, lossof time and wages, other unliquidated damages.”

Planned Parenthood’s yearlong probation was a direct result of exposure coming from a well-publicized investigation conducted by Live Action and reporter Lila Rose. Alabama’s health department responded to the independent research with a collaborating finding that the Planned Parenthood’s clinic operations were deficient and not in compliance with state laws. In order to settle the dispute, the abortion provider willingly consented to a downgrade of its license rather than face revocation.

Life Legal Defense also states that they have knowledge of a second woman, Shemeka, who procured an abortion at Planned Parenthood of Birmingham on June 21, 2010. This botched abortion also took place during theA DPH probationary period of January 2010

We are not aware of the name of the abortion provider for Shemeka’s case. After failing to abort the child surgically, a medication abortion was performed. The health of Shemeka continued to decline, so that she lost her job because of absence, and then lost her car.Eventually, she returned to PPB, which failed to offer her any help. Volunteers on the sidewalk suggested she go to the ER, and took her there. The ER found a dead fetus, and Shemeka was almost presenting with septicemia. Later, Shemeka wrote a statement describing this entireordeal, which the sidewalk volunteer witnessed.This Complaint also calls for immediate investigation into all the records of Planned Parenthood of Birmingham to identify other women harmed, and to identify staff who work/worked at PPB who are/were poorly trained, uncertified, and/or incompetent to perform their duties correctly


Posted in Abortion, Abortion and Sexual Assault, Abortion clinic closed by state, Abortion clinic covers sexual abuse, Abortion Clinic Inspections, Abortion clinic medical waste, abortion clinic safety, Abortion clinic sued, Abortion Clinic Worders, Abortion clinic worker arrested, Abortion complication, Abortion death, Abortion injury, Abortion Regulation, Abortionist, Abortionists and Drugs, National Abortion Federation, pro-choice, Pro-choice law breakers, pro-choice violence with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 6, 2012 by saynsumthn

Miami Herald, The (FL) September 17, 1989

Author: DEBBIE SONTAG Herald Staff Writer

Hattie M., a teacher’s aide, was 21 years old when she picked up the Dade County phone book and looked under A for abortion.

She and her husband already had two kids and they couldn’t afford another. It was that simple.

So — let’s see: Abortion Access Center, Abortion Clinic- Hospital Center, Abortion Information Center. There. All in bold type, all at the same phone number. Must be the place to go. Safe, cheap and confidential, said the phone book. Near Dadeland in an affluent area, so it’s not some sleaze joint, Hattie thought. She called right away. Bring $175, they told her. Cash.

Dr. Robert Kast, a graduate of the University of Guadalajara School of Medicine, estimated that she was 16 weeks pregnant. He performed an abortion and sent her home to Florida City, declaring the procedure “complete and uneventful,” according to Hattie. She was relieved to have it over.

That night eight years ago, however, she began to bleed. Heavily. By the time the ambulance came to take her to James Archer Smith Hospital in Homestead, she was unconscious.

An X-ray exposed a dead fetus, about five months old.

Later, Kast would tell hospital doctors that he knew the abortion had been incomplete, that he had expected the patient to “pass” the fetus naturally. He would claim he had followed normal, accepted clinical procedures.

“Everybody involved was shocked and outraged,” says Dr. Charles Marshall House, then the hospital’s chief of staff. “It was the first and only time I wanted to report a doctor to the state.”

Surgeons performed a Caesarean section. They removed a mutilated, foot-long male fetus that weighed about four-fifths of a pound.

“It looked like the baby had been half-eaten by a dog,” House says.

* * *

In the days before Roe vs. Wade, emergency room doctors were forever cleaning up after botched illegal abortions. Furtive encounters with back-alley bunglers left nearly 1,700 women dead every year.

These days, abortion is supposed to be safe. Performed by skilled professionals, it is a simple procedure. Only a handful of women die each year from abortions gone bad, and serious complications arise in less than one-half of 1 percent of all cases.

But these statistics belie an unnerving political reality. Though a woman’s right to an abortion was considered the key victory of the feminist movement, abortion has never escaped the moral taint that keeps it the most emotional political issue of our time. And in this climate of shadows, the past lingers.

Clinics have a hard time attracting reputable doctors willing to risk being vilified by the Right to Life movement. Moreover, the stigma of abortion is still so painful that many women — even those with private gynecologists — opt for the anonymity of a clinic chosen from the phone book. They don’t shop around. They want it cheap. They want it fast. And they want it over.

Embarrassed and sometimes ashamed, many women will tolerate a low standard of care without complaint. Unless severely injured, most are reluctant to file lawsuits.

And they’re not the only ones who don’t speak up.

Because of the growing militancy of the anti-abortion movement, and because of the anti-abortion leanings of the present U.S. Supreme Court, competent abortion providers find themselves in an ambiguous moral position. They know about the few bad places, the ones with careless procedures, inept doctors and untrained staff. But they are loathe to report them. They fear the adverse publicity will reflect badly on all of them at a politically inopportune time.

Altogether, it is a bad recipe for good medical care. Abortion is a business, but one in which the normal rules of a free marketplace simply don’t apply. Good clinics don’t necessarily thrive; the few bad ones are free to survive and prosper.

It’s not a happy thought. Even in the days of legal abortion, the back alley persists — on a commercial street, in a medical building, with a front door, and sometimes even with a state license.

* * *

No abortion center in South Florida has a reputation more foul than the Eason family’s 17-year-old clinic at 6950 SW 88th Street, the place Hattie M. picked out of the phone book.

At first, in the mid-1970s, when it offered contraception, the Dadeland Family Planning Center was the place to go for many young women. High school and college students carried the clinic’s ID card in their jeans’ pockets, a badge of their newly awakened sexuality.

But soon it got too busy for its patients’ good. The Easons lured clients with misleading ads, listing the clinic under more than three dozen names in the phone book. Women crowded into the clinic, and, on a busy day, as many as 60 patients — twice that at other clinics — were given abortions by the same physician.

Before long, the clinic’s best doctor, the man responsible for its respectable reputation, quit in disgust.

Which is roughly when the Dadeland Family Planning Center — a.k.a. The Women’s Referral Group, and The Abortion Counseling Center, and Planned Population, and The Women’s Crisis Center, and Dade County Abortion, and Dadeland Abortion, and Florida Abortion, and Florida Family Planning, and Birth Control Information, and Adoption Counseling Association, and The Women’s Center of Dade — went into a tailspin.

In the last 10 years, the clinic and its doctors have been sued 15 times. Though lawsuits themselves don’t necessarily prove wrongdoing, this number is extraordinary. Over the same period, The Ladies Centers of South Florida, two busy clinics recommended by Planned Parenthood, have been sued only once.

One doctor who worked at the Dadeland clinic was a convicted sex offender. Another was reprimanded by his state licensing board for “gross malpractice.” A third was responsible for more than $500,000 in out-of-court settlements on abortions gone awry.

Year after year, there were ruptured uteruses, perforated colons and emergency hysterectomies.

Women who were not pregnant were told that they were. And probably, although this is impossible to prove, some of these women were then given what they were told, and believe to this day, were abortions.

Finally, one woman, the unluckiest of all, died.

* * *

Meet the Easons.

Susan Eason Hoffman, 39, the clinic president, currently lives at the Levy County Forestry Camp, a state prison in Bronson, Fla. She was convicted on 11 misdemeanor charges, ranging from possession of cocaine to leaving the scene of an accident. She had also chalked up 32 traffic convictions for speeding and reckless driving. For a time, she continued to receive paychecks from the clinic while in jail.

Brother Marc Eason, 42, a former clinic go-fer, is Inmate No. 069502 at the Dade Correctional Institution. He’s doing life for karate chopping and hatcheting his Coconut Grove roommates to death. They had complained about his sloppiness, which, Marc Eason argued while representing himself in court, made it justifiable homicide.

Their sister, Marlene Berk, runs the Broward’s Women Center, a Fort Lauderdale abortion clinic co-owned by their mother. (The clinic is now operating illegally. Its license expired nearly a year ago.) Berk says she has nothing to do with the Dadeland clinic, of which she was a corporate officer until a few years back.

Which leaves Betty Eason — and her 18- and 21-year-old granddaughters — in charge.

Eason is a 66-year-old widow with a thick scar on her neck
from the time her son stabbed her with a serrated steak knife. (Mother deserved it for having poisoned Father, Marc Eason said before he was committed to the Michigan Center for Forensic Psychiatry. His father died of a heart attack in 1969.)

When she recently filed for personal bankruptcy, Eason owned a 1983 Mercedes-Benz, a $700,000 office building, a $200,000 property in Kendall and a $120,000 interest in a property in Upper Matecumbe Key.

A talkative woman given to wearing floral print dresses and thick stockings with runs, she calls the women who visit her clinic “Dear” and “Doll.”

“Don’t go out there and put yourself in the hands of quacks, dear,” Eason tells a Miami Herald reporter posing as a patient. “There are plenty of places that don’t care about women like we do.”

* * *

Ellen Lorena Williams was 38 years old, and she had a good job as a personnel manager for the Dade County School Board. Married with two kids, she had no place in her life for another child. So when she realized she was pregnant, she called Dadeland Family Planning.

Williams was a big woman, six feet tall and nearly 300 pounds. Dr. Chatoor Bisal Singh, a graduate of the University of the West Indies medical school, could not tell exactly how pregnant she was. He sent her to get a sonogram and estimated
from the results that Williams was 13 weeks along.

Singh, newly divorced, had just arrived in Miami from California and was “strapped for cash,” he said in an interview with Tropic. He usually did not perform abortions, he said, but accepted a temporary job at the Dadeland clinic while Robert Kast was on leave.

Singh performed a suction abortion on Williams, after she signed a mimeographed consent form stating she was aware that “complications from abortions are uncommon in the hands of trained medical personnel; however, they sometimes occur.”

Two days later, accompanied by her husband, Walter, a mechanic, she returned to the clinic from her Richmond Heights home. Holding her arms across her stomach and rocking back and forth, she said the pain was nearly unbearable. Betty Eason gave her some tea and called the doctor.

Four hours later, Singh arrived. Williams was resting on a brown Naugahyde lounge chair, covered with a blanket. Singh took Williams into an examining room and performed a second suctioning, assisted by Dr. Nabil Ghali, whose medical license, while active in Florida, had been revoked in Kentucky after he was convicted for having sexual intercourse with a 13-year-old girl.

Williams was discharged with a bottle of antibiotics. The next morning, Eason took a sample of Williams’ blood to a laboratory for analysis, but the lab refused to run a culture
because the clinic had not protected the specimen in a sterile container. At about the same time, Williams was being rushed by ambulance to Coral Reef Hospital, where she underwent emergency surgery.

The surgery was too late. Her uterus and bowel had been perforated during the first abortion and the infection was acute.

Williams died the next morning.

It was 1985. Of 1.6 million abortions performed in the United States that year, only six resulted in the death of the patient. The odds of dying from an abortion were less than one in 250,000.

Following Williams’ death, Eason told The Miami Herald: “This has nothing to do with the clinic at all. As far as we’re concerned, he didn’t do anything. He did not murder that woman. You can accuse anybody of anything.”

The Florida Board of Medical Examiners charged Singh with “gross or repeated malpractice.” Singh still does not think he was at fault: “It was just an unfortunate combination of factors. I feel sorry that the lady died.”

* * *

Betty Eason says she didn’t enter her field for the money.

“Someone very close to me nearly died in an illegal abortion in Mexico,” she says. “Also, I saw a black woman in a New York hospital nearly bleed to death after she had an abortion with a coat hanger. I’m pro-choice. That’s what gets me up in the morning.”

Eason started out both in Michigan, where she began the Abortion AAA Advisory Center, and in Florida, where her daughter Susan Eason Hoffman opened the Women’s Referral Group.

This was in 1972, the year before the Supreme Court made abortion accessible in every state. What the Easons did was to make arrangements for women to get abortions elsewhere, usually New York. They charged a fee for a service that Planned
Parenthood was performing for free.

Which apparently gave the Easons an idea. They started doing business as Planned Parenthood of Oakland County, Mich., and incorporated as Planned Parenthood of Greater Miami. The Michigan Planned Parenthood people were suspicious early on, when an irate woman whose daughter had flown to New York for an abortion called to complain about the arrangements. Planned
Parenthood had no record of the daughter’s trip.

This mystery was cleared up when Planned Parenthood began hearing Planned Parenthood ads on the radio — ads it had not placed. In 1974, the national organization filed suit against the Easons for federal trademark infringement, and a judge told the Easons to stop using the name.

“There was a big flap,” says Eve Paul, vice president of legal affairs for Planned Parenthood. “They were deliberately trying to appropriate our reputation. It was outrageous. We have very high medical standards.”

Once abortion was legalized, the Women’s Referral Group became one of a handful of referral agencies that flourished in the shadow of a law prohibiting the advertising of abortion services.

After nearly five years in Miami, the Easons started offering abortions on their premises. They bought their own building at 6950 SW 88th Street for $490,000.

From the start, they had a sure-fire method for attracting customers. They listed their two phone numbers under about 40 names. One quarter-page ad in the Yellow Pages under the headline DADELAND said the Easons’ Abortion Access Center was approved by the Women’s Referral Group, which were one and the same.

The clinic’s first doctor was Richard Litt, a graduate of the University of Florida Medical School who had done his residency at Jackson Memorial Hospital and was board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology. He got involved because a childhood friend, Steve Fisher, was the Easons’ administrator.

Litt performed abortions there two days a week. “When I worked there, I ran the medical part and I wouldn’t let them near me. I did many procedures, and had no real complications.” But by 1981, Litt was disgusted with the place. Outside the procedure rooms, it was dirty, with cigarette ashes scattered about the pale linoleum. Litt says the Easons were asking him to do too many abortions a day, on women too far along in their pregnancy.

And Hoffman, who at that point had had several confrontations with the law, often acted unprofessionally at the office. “She would kick doors in and have loud drunken arguments,” says another former employee.

The final indignity, Litt says, was when someone at the clinic started stealing his prescription forms, forging his signature to get narcotics in bulk. He found out after a state computer noticed an unusual number of orders for such drugs as Demerol under his name. The state Department of Professional Regulation investigated. Litt says it was proved his signature was forged, but the state reprimanded him for allowing his prescription forms to fall into the wrong hands. (The state’s files from 1983 have been destroyed, says Pat Robinson, public information specialist.)

So, Litt left the clinic.

“Dr. Litt was the last mainstream gynecologist they had,” says Lynn Rosenthal, a Tallahassee clinic administrator who used to work in Miami.

And he left with bitterness: “The place is a scum hole. I wouldn’t send a dog there . . . They should be put in jail.”

* * *

Good clinics do more than provide low-cost abortions. They serve as inexpensive gynecologists, providing contraception and sex education counseling. Their owners are pro-choice activists, who see themselves as advocates for women. Usually, they belong to the National Abortion Federation and abide by a long list of exacting professional standards (including one that specifically prohibits multiple listings in the phone book).

The owners of some National Abortion Federation-certified clinics readily acknowledge that they are in it for the money, too. Clinics are businesses, and as such should be well-run and profitable, says Patricia Windle of The Aware Woman in Melbourne. “I’m a capitalist-feminist,” she says.

But in addition to the feminists — the people who say their first concern is their women clients — there are “the entrepreneurs,” as Janis Compton-Carr, executive director of the Florida Abortion Rights Action League, euphemistically calls them: Those in it for the bucks alone, attracted by the low start-up costs, the high demand and the all-cash nature of a business that never has any accounts receivable.

The Easons once sought the official acceptance of their respectable colleagues — membership in the National Abortion Federation. But they were denied, on the basis of their application, a phone interview with their doctor and a background check. The federation did offer to do an on-site inspection, asking for a deposit of $1,200. The Easons declined the offer.

They were also considered ineligible for membership in the Florida Abortion Council, a professional association, because their clinic had a poor reputation and didn’t “meet the standards,” according to Patricia Martin, a former council president.

Local abortion providers never knew quite what to do with the Easons. They were all supposed to be in it together, devoted to making abortion safe, accessible and free of stigma. But solidarity couldn’t be indiscriminate.

“I used to call (Hoffman) up all the time and say, ‘Do you know how hard we’re all working to make this safe and keep it legal? You’re a disgrace,’ ” says Lynn Leight, a registered nurse and owner of The Ladies Centers in North and South Miami.

But no one who believed the Dadeland clinic to be bad news ever spoke up against it publicly, and no one ever registered an official complaint.

* * *

Neither did the women who depended on the clinic. But that is not unusual.

Of all the malpractice suits filed against gynecologists in this country, only about 3.4 percent are related to abortions.

That is, primarily, because complications are so very rare. But it is also because women are reluctant to sue when they encounter difficulties at abortion clinics.

“No one wants to get on the witness stand and tell the world that they had an abortion. They don’t want to be cross- examined about how many men they had in how many days,” says Barbara Radford, executive director of the National Abortion Federation. “Also, these may be women who have never had access to any good health care. They just don’t know they have the right to stand up for themselves.”

Given the odds, the Easons had more than their share of legal challenges.

The average obstetrician/gynecologist in Florida is sued 1.2 times over the course of a 33-year career, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Dr. Robert Kast has been sued seven times — all for abortions done in a three-year period at Eason’s clinic. Kast, then 32 years old, began doing abortions at the Dadeland clinic soon after he started practicing medicine in Florida in 1981.

In court records, Kast said the clinic asked him to perform as many as 50 abortions a day, most first trimester, but some second, which are more difficult. That’s about eight hours of surgery, virtually nonstop. (Dr. Arthur Schatz, an experienced local practitioner, says he prefers to do no more than 35, all first trimester, because “after that, my hand is cramped, and I’m more likely to make mistakes.”)

At the Dadeland clinic, Kast’s first problem was with Teresa R.

It was Halloween, 1981. Teresa, accompanied by her mother, went to the Dadeland clinic for an abortion. Kast performed the routine dilation and curettage, cleaning the walls of the uterus by suction and scraping. He then sent Teresa on her way.

Two months later, Teresa’s stomach was swollen and she was vomiting in the morning. Her mother took her back to the Dadeland clinic, where Kast found the girl was still pregnant, this time about 22 weeks along. He took her into the examining room to perform a second abortion, suggesting that her mother go get a cup of coffee, according to the mother. Less than a half-hour later, Teresa was hemorrhaging from a perforated uterus. The clinic wouldn’t call an ambulance, the mother said, so she had to drive her daughter to Jackson Memorial.

The fetus, which was dead, was removed in emergency surgery. A year and a half of pain later, Teresa had a total abdominal hysterectomy.

She was 16. She dropped out of school.

Of the $175,000 she got in a settlement, all but $64,000 went to pay attorney fees and medical bills, her attorney said.

Kast would not comment on the particulars of that or any other case. He maintains that, in every instance, “I did not deviate from any standards of care and my medical care and treatment was appropriate and fully defensible . . . No negligence was attributable to my care.”

It was not too long after Teresa R.’s bad experience that Hattie M., the woman whose mangled fetus was removed in emergency surgery at James Archer Smith Hospital, underwent her trauma. (Eight years later, she declined a personal interview, and communicated with The Herald through her brother, a lawyer.)

Despite his intentions when he saw the results of Hattie’s incomplete abortion, Dr. House, the former chief of staff at James Archer Smith Hospital, never got around to reporting Kast to the state Department of Professional Regulation. Hattie, who sustained no permanent physical injury, received a $25,000 settlement, according to her attorney.

The following spring, Dawn J., then 15 years old, visited the Dadeland clinic, one of 46 women to undergo an abortion by Kast that day. For the next week, she called the clinic daily, complaining of pain and a thick vaginal discharge.

“Your symptoms are normal. Take some Tylenol,” she said she was told. A week later, in emergency surgery at Baptist Hospital, her perforated uterus, ovaries and Fallopian tubes were removed. .

Dawn received a $195,000 settlement in her lawsuit against Kast. The doctor was charged with “gross or repeated malpractice” by the state. Later, on the recommendation of a hearing officer, the charge was dismissed by the Florida Board of Medical Examiners.

“While there are physicians who would have reacted differently than (Kast) reacted, it appears that (Kast’s) peers who perform abortion procedures . . . would have responded in the same manner,” the hearing officer wrote.

Deidre M. was next. Following her abortion by Kast, the 20- year-old was left with a two-inch, jagged rip in her uterus. She ended up having a total abdominal hysterectomy. The case was settled out of court for $150,000.

There is no question that even the most skilled practitioner can run into a complication during an abortion procedure. But if the doctor takes his time, performs a careful pre-operative exam, and responds immediately to problems, the damage will be avoided or minimized, says Dr. Arthur Schatz, the director of medical services for The Ladies Center and a clinical assistant professor at the University of Miami medical school.

Incomplete abortions are the most common complication, occuring in one-half to 1 per cent of all abortions. Handled correctly, however, they should pose no threat to the patient. Generally, only small pieces of tissue are left behind, causing a patient to bleed excessively afterward. The tissue is easily removed by a second suctioning. If a doctor misses significant remnants of the fetus, Schatz says, it is because he didn’t sufficiently examine the tissue he removed.

Perforations of the uterus are more worrisome, and less likely. They can usually be avoided if the physician carefully checks the position of the uterus before beginning, Schatz says. That position tells the doctor the angle at which to insert his instruments. Inserted incorrectly, the instruments can easily tear the uterine wall.

If the uterus is perforated, an experienced doctor should immediately “have a reasonable suspicion,” Schatz says. At that point serious complications are easily prevented by halting the abortion and starting the patient on antibiotics. If the doctor instead proceeds, he is likely to perforate other organs and leave the patient vulnerable to infection, eventually necessitating a hysterectomy.

Well-run clinics, however, usually avoid all of the above problems. In a study of three Planned Parenthood clinics in New York, Dr. Michael Burnhill found that there were no deaths and no forced hysterectomies among 170,000 abortions performed over 16 years.

Kast maintains that he did nothing other doctors would not have done. The fact that he settled some suits, he says, implies no admission of culpability. They were all settled for “nominal sums” and for their “nuisance value,” he says.

(Dr. Walter Ward, the attorney who represented Dawn, says settlements of $150,000 and $195,000 are “by no means nominal in my parlance.”)

In the next couple of years, three more women accused Kast of medical malpractice. Sharon S. went to court, alleging that she had an ectopic pregnancy — a fetus in her Fallopian tube — that Kast failed to diagnose, instead performing a suction abortion on her uterus. A jury found Kast wasn’t negligent. The two other suits were dropped.

Kast, meanwhile, was studying for exams to be board- certified as an obstetrician/gynecologist. He recommended that Dr. Chatoor Bisal Singh take his place.

Singh, a 41-year-old native of British Guyana, had graduated from medical school at the University of the West Indies in Jamaica in 1973. He had done three years of post- graduate work in Guyana, Washington, D.C., and Miami. He was “not an abortionist,” he said in an interview, “just an honest, easygoing guy looking for something temporary.”

Dr. Nabil Ghali was also working at the Dadeland clinic at the time. Ghali had lost his Kentucky license in 1983 after being convicted of four misdemeanor counts of unlawful transaction with a minor; to wit: sexual relations with a 13- year-old girl. But by then, he already had a Florida license — even though he had lied on his application, saying he had been sued for malpractice only once, when he’d really been sued four times.

In 1985, Ellen Williams died after being treated by Singh and Ghali. A jury awarded her family $1 million.

The same day that Singh perforated Williams’ uterus and bowel, he also performed an abortion on Patricia W.

Patricia, 25, began hemorrhaging and passing fetal parts when she got home. She wrapped up the tissue in aluminum foil, put it in a plastic bag and took it to the clinic, where, she says, Eason told her it was “a blood clot.” Actually, she learned at the South Dade Community Health Center, it was a 16- week-old fetal head. At Jackson Memorial, her uterus was scraped a second time to clean out the tissue left behind. Her next stop was Circuit Court, where she filed suit, eventually getting a $100,000 settlement, according to her attorney.

Singh left the clinic after Williams’ death. “It was a bad month,” he said. Ghali stayed, even after the state of Florida revoked his license in June of 1987, having learned of his record in Kentucky. Ghali appealed that revocation. For the year his appeal was pending, he found work at the Dadeland clinic.

During that time, two women went to court alleging malpractice in abortions Ghali performed there. One of them was Cynthia C., then 30 and the mother of two. She said she called the clinic after her abortion, complaining of heavy bleeding and the discharge of large pieces of tissue. Clinic workers told her to take aspirin, she said. Later that night, she went by ambulance to James Archer Smith Hospital, arriving with no blood pressure because her uterine artery had been severed. She underwent a hysterectomy, eventually receiving a minimal settlement from Ghali, who was not insured.

Grace S., also forced to undergo an emergency hysterectomy, has had to accept that her lawsuit may get nowhere. To date, her attorney’s process server has been unable to locate Dr. Ghali.

And the Easons carry no insurance. In every case, it was the physicians’ insurers who bore the brunt of the settlements. The Easons, meanwhile, repeated the same refrain when problems arose: We are not a medical clinic. We are not responsible for what the doctors do. We make sure they have a license, and beyond that we are not qualified to pass judgment on their capabilities.

(National Abortion Federation standards state that clinic owners bear a fundamental responsibility to hire trained doctors, and to evaluate their performance. If they cannot judge the physicians themselves, says the federation, they should hire a medical director.)

“All doctors make mistakes,” says Eason’s daughter, Broward clinic owner Marlene Berk.

Anti-abortionists have known for a long time that the Dadeland Family Planning Center would serve them well.

If you’re against a woman’s right to choose abortion — if you believe abortion is murder and all persons who perform abortions are butchers — what better place to target for protest than the rare clinic where someone has actually died?

Several years ago, the South Dade Crisis Pregnancy Center opened in the building next door to Dadeland Family Planning. That meant the folks at the pregnancy center were on hand to engage in “sidewalk counseling” and invite women into their office to hear about alternatives to abortion.

“It’s the worst clinic around, and somehow also the most prolific,” says the Rev. Henry Patino, who serves on the board of the Crisis Pregnancy Center and as president of the local chapter of the anti-abortion Christian Action Council. “Unsuspecting girls keep coming in like sheep to the slaughter, with no idea of the quality or lack of quality of medical care involved.”

Last spring, Patino was arrested, along with 137 other anti-abortion demonstrators, for blocking the entrance to Eason’s clinic. It was part of Operation Rescue, a national mobilization of the increasingly militant anti-abortion movement.

It was also a major media event, and pro-choice activists believed it demanded a counter-demonstration. That they really should be there, on behalf of the issue, not the individual clinic. But it made them queasy.

Says pro-choice activist Lynn Rosenthal: “We’re committed to protecting access to abortion care, but to go and defend that place . . . ”

Still, they went.

* * *

For years, there has been a chronic, nagging rumor about the Easons’ clinic — that it performs abortions on women who aren’t pregnant.

According to the rumor, it works like this: A woman thinks she may be pregnant. She goes to the clinic for a free test. She is told the test is positive, so she makes an appointment for an abortion. The procedure is done, quickly, and, if all goes well, with no complications. And then for the rest of her life, the woman believes, falsely, that she was once pregnant and had an abortion.

The rumor began when women who turned out not to be pregnant would show up at other clinics in town for abortions.

The women would be tested for pregnancy before they met the doctor, and their tests would be negative. “Why were you sure you were pregnant?” they’d be asked. “Well, I had a test at Dadeland, and they said I was positive . . . ”

Nella Vicente was one of those women.

Twenty years old and a high-school graduate, Vicente has been on her own since she was 16. For the past two years she has been a cashier with the same company. Earlier this year, she was “behind on my period for like two, three months.” A friend had gone to Dadeland, so she went there, too:

“There were so many kids in there. It was crowded and it was mainly kids. I waited there, praying I’m not pregnant. Then this lady, she called my name, and took me out in the hall and said, ‘Your test came out positive.’ That’s when I was crying. She said, ‘Would you like to make an appointment? We have an abortion clinic here, too.’ I didn’t have time to think. I believe I said, ‘For when?’ I asked her a question, ‘Is the doctor . . . can he do a complete job well?’

“She’s like, ‘Everything’ll be fine.’

“I’m surprised I made it home. Through my head, all I did was cry. I was supposed to go the next day. I talked to my boyfriend about keeping it, but there was no way.

“I took out the phone book, and I called other clinics, you know, just to find out what abortion is like. Finally this one lady, she actually talked to me for a long time, she explained it all to me, for like 20 minutes. I decided to go to her place. The Dadeland place was really dirty and gross. I saw a big roach there.

“The next morning, real early, I went to my boss and I was crying and telling her I was pregnant. I had to ask her for the $200. I was so embarrassed.

“So I went to that other clinic to have an abortion.

“They gave me a pregnancy test. It came out negative. I said, ‘That can’t be right.’ They said, ‘Do I want to take the sensitive test?’ and I go, ‘Yes,’ and that was negative, too.

“They said, ‘You’re not pregnant.’ I go, ‘Do the abortion. It has to be in there because the other people told me I was pregnant.’ I was like, ‘Can’t you do the abortion anyway?’ I wanted this desperate. Then I saw the doctor lady, and she felt, and she said, ‘There’s nothing inside.’

“After I left, I had to take at least five more tests
because I was so nervous, and even when I got my period, I wasn’t sure. I kept thinking I could feel a baby kicking me.

“Later, later, I got to thinking: What would have happened if I went back to that Dadeland place?”

* * *

The Dadeland clinic, like most others, offers for free the “two-minute sensitive” pregnancy test, which examines urine for the fetal hormone.

Essentially, the clinic employee puts one drop of urine on a laboratory slide and mixes it with a testing serum. The sample is checked in a couple of minutes. If it is positive — if the woman is pregnant — it will be smooth and milky. If it is negative, the sample will be speckled.

It is nearly impossible to confuse the two results.

The test, called “latex-agglutination” and administered in laboratories, is 90 to 98 percent accurate, according to the Food and Drug Administration. Nearly all the inaccuracy takes the form of a false negative reading, the FDA says; there is almost no chance that a woman who is not pregnant will test positive.

The only things absolutely known to cause false positive readings are anti-psychotic drugs and kidney disease, says Broden Staples, a reviewer of clinical chemistry and toxicology for the FDA.

If certain manufacturers’ tests are used, marijuana, methadone, and some other drugs can distort the test, as can an unusually high concentration of the hormone secreted when a woman ovulates.

However, “If you eliminate serious drug users from your control group, I would not expect to find a false positive rate of even 1 percent,” Staples says.

* * *

This summer, on the basis of Nella Vicente’s words and the persistence of the rumors, Tropic sent several young women to the Dadeland clinic for pregnancy tests.

None were pregnant. None were drug users. And none had kidney disease.

The pregnancy tests are advertised as free, but when each woman arrived, she was asked for “a donation, whatever you can afford.”

Of the 10 women we sent — they each claimed to be several weeks late in their periods — eight were told that they were negative. But all eight were then advised that it was “probably a false negative.” Clinic workers suggested they take a $40 blood test to be sure. A few women were asked if they had $225 in cash on them before they even took the test. Susan Blazejewski, a Miami Herald employee, was asked if she lived nearby, if she could rush home and get some cash. She said she could not.

“Well, the doctor’s here right now, and if you wait until next week it will cost you more money. Do you have $450?” Eason said.

“Shouldn’t I wait and see if I’m pregnant first?” Blazejewski answered. Told later by another employee that her results were “probably a false negative,” she asked what that meant.

“You are probably pregnant, but either too far along or not far enough for the test to show positive,” she was told.

* * *

Two of the eight women we sent were told they were pregnant.

Both were immediately asked: “Do you want to make an appointment?”

Both said yes. Both then immediately took urine tests elsewhere and were found to be negative.

And both kept their appointments at the Dadeland clinic. Perhaps, as the National Abortion Federation insists should be done, the clinic would repeat the pregnancy test, and the results would be different. Or failing that, perhaps the doctor, on performing a pelvic exam, would suspect that something was amiss.

Judging from the date they gave as the first day of their last menstrual period, one woman would have been 10 weeks pregnant, the other 12. At that stage, a doctor should be able to note changes in the uterus from a manual pelvic exam.

The first doctor, Scott Dunkin, who also performs abortions at other clinics, did notice something wrong. When he examined the patient — Herald sports writer Linda Robertson — he said: “There’s nothing in here.”

Dunkin told Robertson she wasn’t pregnant and left the examining room. Then Betty Eason showed up. Eason suggested that Robertson take a $40 blood test. And she volunteered to “hold on” to Robertson’s $225 — collected up front — in case she did turn out to be pregnant.

Robertson demanded a refund, and was given $175 back. The remaining $50, Eason said, was kept as a fee for the day’s services — even though they were only necessary because of the clinic’s inaccurate urine test.

Things proceeded differently for the second woman.

* * *

E.B. is 22 years old and serves as a clerk at another clinic in Miami, a reputable clinic.

When it turned out she was mistakenly pronounced pregnant, she agreed to return, but asked that we not publish her full name.

She was accompanied to the Dadeland clinic by Herald reporter David Von Drehle, who posed as her boyfriend.

They arrived at 9:15 a.m. The building is squat, two stories of dull brick. It says “Medical Center of Dadeland.” Inside and to the right, past peeling plaster, down an unlit hallway, is Room 130, the only suite occupied.

Von Drehle sat with several other men in a waiting room decorated with a brown and orange oil painting depicting autumn. E.B. joined 10 young women inside, behind a locked door. They were asked to fill out forms. They did so without talking.

One consent form — unheard of at other clinics — said: “When a suction curettage is done and the patient is not pregnant because the test turned out to be a false positive, the fact is that a medical procedure was done, and there can be no refund.”

She signed. No one made sure she or any other women understood the long, dense forms. There was no counseling (as the National Abortion Federation requires at its member clinics). And no one asked (as the Federation insists be done) if the women had freely chosen to terminate their pregnancy, if they had any concerns about going through with an abortion, or if they had any questions about the procedure.

The women proceeded in a group to the clinic lab, where they stood in a line against the wall. They were not given a repeat urine test (which the Federation says is mandatory unless the women have had an ultrasound exam, which “sees” a fetus). After a half-hour, when the doctor arrived, E.B. was given a gown and plastic bag for her clothes.

The operating rooms were not soundproofed, so the women waiting listened to the loud suctioning of the machines as other abortions were proceeding. When patients emerged from the
procedure rooms, they were led to a bank of brown Naugahyde recliners. Clinic workers spread a fan of brown paper towels on the seats before they sat down.

Finally, E.B. was accompanied into a procedure room by a clinic worker who stayed there with her. E.B. got up on the table, noting the tray filled with instruments — what looked like rods with curved tips, scissors and forceps.

A young doctor entered. “Hi, how are you?” he said. “Looks like someone’s been to the beach lately.” He scrubbed his hands, asking E.B. to recall the first day of her last menstrual period. She said, “June 7,” 10 weeks earlier. He asked her if she had ever been pregnant and she said no.

E.B. says the doctor then performed a standard bimanual pelvic examination, placing one hand in her vagina and the other on her belly. She says she was carefully watching his face, “waiting to see an expression of, ‘Oh, my goodness.’ ”

There was no such reaction. He reached for an instrument.

“No!” she said. “Stop!” She sat up abruptly. “I’m not sure I can do this.”

“Well, no one’s going to force you,” the doctor said.

“I’m just not sure,” she continued.

“Well, you have time to think about it,” the doctor said. And with that, he left the room to go into the next.

After dressing, E.B. asked the clinic worker to check with the doctor as to how far along she was in her “pregnancy.” The worker went into the next procedure room, emerged and said: “He says you’re six to eight weeks pregnant.”

E.B. poked her head into the waiting room to get Von Drehle, her “boyfriend.” They stood whispering at the door until Betty Eason appeared.

“What’s the problem?” Eason asked.

“I couldn’t go through with it,” E.B. said. Eason gestured toward a small room outfitted with a Formica-topped table and three plastic chairs. She told E.B. there was nothing to be afraid of.

“We’ve been in business 17 years,” Eason said. “It’s a very simple procedure. You saw the girls in the recovery room. They can go straight to lunch. They can go back to work this afternoon. It’s just cleaning out the uterus. It’s just cleaning out two periods. Many women who aren’t even pregnant have it done so they can get pregnant.”

“Well, what about the baby?” E.B. asked. “I’m worried about hurting the baby.”

“What baby?” Eason answered. “There’s no baby. There’s just two periods there that will be cleaned out.”

“You mean I’m not pregnant?”

“Oh, you’re pregnant. But there is no baby there. Get that out of your head. You know how much blood there is on the pad during your period? That little bit? Well, this will be twice as much. Two periods. And some water. If you don’t terminate, then it will become a fetus, and after birth, then it will be a baby.”

After a bit more talk, Eason said: “Think about it for a week. Do you want a refund? Or do you want us to hold the money?” She started out of the room, then turned and popped her head back in: “You know ‘abort’ just means to stop something. You can abort a plane flight.”

Eason returned five minutes later.

“I was talking to some of the girls in the waiting room,” E.B. said, “and some of them have been throwing up every morning and feeling sick and stuff like that. Are you sure I’m pregnant?”

Eason: “Oh, yes. You’re definitely pregnant. You’re eight weeks pregnant.”

“Eight weeks?”

“Eight to 10 weeks. And I have to tell you that the longer you let this go, the more it is going to cost. Did you see the Spanish woman in there? I hope her husband can find another $400. They waited too long.”

“We just want to think about it,” E.B. said.

Eason studied her file. “You need to make a decision. If you decide to have the baby, you should get married and have the baby. But you’re 22 and you’re still in school. Do you want a career? Can he support you?”

E.B. and Von Drehle left, getting all but $50 of the $225 back.

“Nothing has gone on here that you don’t know,” Betty Eason said. She declined to answer questions for this story on the advice of her attorney. “I don’t want people picketing my home,” Her daughter Susan did not respond to phone calls and a letter
sent to her in prison.

* * *

The doctor who examined E.B. was Steve Silvers, who recently completed his residency at Jackson Memorial. He told Tropic that he had only worked at the Dadeland clinic three Fridays, and that he accepted work there because he was $200,000 in debt and needed cash. He said he relies on the clinic’s pregnancy test as a diagnostic tool. “They misled me as well as the patient.”

Silvers and a member of the clinic staff who was in the examining room, however, maintain that he did not give E.B. a bimanual pelvic examination, or ever say that she was six to eight weeks pregnant. If he had examined her, Silvers says, he would have noted it on her chart, and there is no notation, he says. Silvers says he “never touched her. . . . She’s lying.”

“I believe I know when a hand is stuck up my uterus.” E.B. responds.

Besides, Silvers says, if he had reached for an instrument after performing a pelvic exam, that wouldn’t necessarily mean he was about to proceed with an abortion. The next step would be to insert an instrument called the speculum (also inserted at the start of an abortion procedure) and check the condition of the woman’s cervix. If the cervix showed no signs of pregnancy, Silvers said, he would not proceed with an abortion.

* * *

Dr. Arthur Schatz, the University of Miami medical school professor, is a board certified obstretrician/gynecologist and experienced in performing abortions:

“You rely on a pregnancy test, but you fundamentally rely on your own clinical observations. Every patient is to have a bimanual pelvic examination before a procedure. That tells you what you need to know.

“If the uterus is not enlarged, you stop right there. Even if you see changes in the cervix that are consistent with pregnancy, if the uterus is not enlarged, then it is too early to do the procedure.

“If you do it too early, then it’s harder to dilate the cervix, and you risk missing the pregnancy.

“So if the patient has on the chart a positive pregnancy test and I find no enlargement of the uterus, I tell the patient to return in two weeks. End of story.”

* * *

A clinic such as the Easons put Florida’s pro-choice advocates in a difficult ethical position. “In my gut,” says Janis Compton-Carr, full-time Florida pro-choice activist, “I am completely aghast at what goes on at that place. But I staunchly oppose anything that would correct this situation in law.”

That is: greater state regulation of abortion clinics.

Regulation has been a political battle since the day abortion was legalized. The lines are clearly drawn: The anti- abortion people want them, and, the pro-choice people don’t.

Regulations, pro-choice people say, are harassment, governmental interference in a private matter. In practice, they would not protect women but rather make it more difficult for them to obtain an abortion — which is their right.

Anti-abortionists generally interpret this to mean that abortion providers don’t want any interference with their “mills” and “butcher shops” — that they couldn’t survive close scrutiny.

It’s a tricky issue.

“It makes sense to have some kind of regulation and licensing for all out-patient surgery. Podiatrists, whatever,” says Barbara Radford of the National Abortion Federation. “We support that. But, unfortunately, you can’t assume that lawmakers will do the right thing.”

Right after the Supreme Court decided this summer to give states greater power to restrict access to abortion, Florida’s anti-abortion governor, Bob Martinez, called a special session of the Legislature expressly for that purpose. What Martinez wants the Legislature to do, when it meets in October, is outlaw abortions in public hospitals, outlaw public funding of abortions and prevent public employees from counseling women about their right to choose abortion. He also wants to prevent women from having abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy if doctors believe the fetus could survive outside the womb.

Martinez is, in other words, going as far as the state of Missouri went in Missouri vs. Webster, the case that the Supreme Court upheld in July. But that decision doesn’t hit private clinics — where most abortions are performed — directly.

Pro-choice activists expect that the governor will again follow the Supreme Court’s lead if, this fall, it upholds Illinois in its case against Dr. Richard Ragsdale, a would-be abortion clinic owner. That would mean that Martinez may propose that Florida copy Illinois by requiring state officials to hold public hearings before licensing a new clinic and demanding a minimum size for examining rooms, procedure rooms, recovery rooms, corridors and doors. These requirements would turn clinics into the functional equivalents of hospitals — unnecessary for such a safe, simple procedure, clinic owners say. Besides, they add, it would be so expensive that it would force many abortion providers out of business, and cause others to jack up prices, virtually doubling the cost of a first- trimester abortion.

But that isn’t what most scares pro-choice advocates.

The bottom line, the real fear, is that the U.S. Supreme Court will reverse Roe vs. Wade. Turn back the clock. Outlaw abortion.

* * *

It is because they are so leery of what will happen this fall that many local pro-choice activists didn’t want this story to be told. Not right now. It is because they have always felt vulnerable that they never spoke up against the Dadeland clinic, which they know to be a bad place.

“The hysteria is already bad enough and we don’t want to give the hysterics weapons,” says clinic owner Patricia Baird Windle, a founder of the Florida Abortion Council. On behalf of three other Florida abortion providers, Windle wrote the publisher of The Miami Herald requesting that Tropic’s story “about a wretched abortion clinic” be held until after October, when the Florida Legislature’s special session meets and the Supreme Court’s decision on the Ragsdale case is expected.

Now more than ever, Windle believes, pro-choice advocates must maintain a hard line: that a woman is safer when abortion is legal. To acknowledge that in some instances women are still not so safe is to dilute the argument, to hand something over to the other side.

Windle fears all abortion providers will be tarred with the same brush, tainted by association. As do others.

“This will hurt us,” says Lynn Rosenthal in Tallahassee, echoing the sentiments of other pro-choice leaders.

They all mention how the pro-choice movement suffered after a previous abortion scandal. In 1983, four women died from botched abortions at Hipolito Barreiro’s notorious Biscayne Boulevard clinic called the Women’s Care Center. The media closely followed the closing of the clinic by court order, Barreiro’s arrest on charges of manslaughter and his ultimate conviction of practicing medicine without a license.

And in response, the Dade County grand jury called for greater state regulation of abortion clinics — regulation previously declared unconstitutional by the Florida Supreme Court.

Between 1985 and 1987, there was greater scrutiny. The Legislature mandated a risk management program for abortion clinics. Clinics had to report annually to HRS all abortion- related complications and all malpractice claims filed against them. They had to report within three days if there was a death at their clinic.

But the program ended because there were so few problems reported by clinics that it wasn’t worth the expense.

Which goes to show that greater regulation is not needed, abortion providers say; the regulation that exists is sufficient. And that is: A license.

Every clinic is supposed to have one. To get one, a clinic must pay a $35 fee, and undergo an inspection.

The inspectors check to make sure the clinic has photocopies of its doctors’ licenses; that patient records are kept; and that fetal remains are disposed of in accordance with state law.

When Ellen Williams died after an abortion at the Dadeland Family Planning Clinic, Dade Medical Examiner Joe Davis requested a special investigation. Investigators checked everything they could by law: The clinic indeed had copies of its doctors’ licenses; patient records were kept; fetal remains were adequately disposed of.

In other words, the clinic passed.

* * *

“Let’s face it,” says Barbara Radford of the National Abortion Federation. “Abortion attracted undesirable operators when it was illegal. And it has not been legal that long. In some areas, there is still a feeling that providing abortions is something quasi-legal.

“The anti-abortion people don’t help. They harass women who go to clinics, harass women who own clinics and harass doctors who perform abortions. So you find women using false names, clinic workers forced to keep unpublished phone numbers and trained, qualified doctors who think it’s not worth the hassle.

“All of this makes it easier for places that take advantage of women to exist. And we just can’t allow this. We can’t allow the other side to dictate the terms of debate. We shouldn’t speak in whispers and we shouldn’t be cowed. if we are advocates for women, we have to protect women.”

* * *

The last year and a half has been rough for the Easons.

First, Betty Eason’s daughter, Susan Hoffman, was thrown in jail for driving under the influence. She was sentenced to two years, six months.

Then they had to shut down the clinic.

Money was their undoing. Not that there wasn’t any. They charged $225 for the simplest, first trimester procedure, of which the doctor got a $50 cut. Business was pretty good.

But then along came the Internal Revenue Service. First the IRS put liens on Hoffman’s and Eason’s personal bank accounts, saying they owed $121,000, and $84,500 in income taxes. (Dade County said Eason also owed $40,000 in property taxes.)

Then it seized the bank accounts of the Women’s Referral Group, claiming the clinic owed $330,000 from three years of unpaid corporate taxes. Eason claimed she was running a nonprofit business, although, at the time, the state of Florida listed it as a for-profit corporation. She told the IRS she was not responsible for the money, as it was owed by Dadeland Family Planning Clinic, a corporation she dissolved, and not by the Women’s Referral Group. One and the same, the IRS answered.

So Hoffman and Eason filed for protection under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code — for each of them personally and for the clinic. Under Chapter 11 of the code, they would be allowed to continue operating the clinic as long as they came up with a plan for reorganizing their business to pay off debts.

But the U.S. Trustee said no to reorganization. The Women’s Referral Group will be dissolved, the trustees said, because of the “gross mismanagement or dishonesty of the debtor.” The U.S. Trustee’s attorney cited the following: the failure to report salaries of corporate officers to the IRS, and the failure to withhold federal taxes; the use of money from the Women’s Referral Group to pay off personal debts; and the payment of salaries to members of the family who “performed no services.”

The court-appointed trustee for the clinic, Jules Bagdan, had no trouble dissolving the corporation. In June, he disconnected the phones, closed the clinic and terminated its lease (with Eason, who owns the building). Then he had to sell the corporate assets, which amounted to nothing more than $5,000 in used chairs and suction equipment. He advertised the sale, drawing one bidder only.


Within little more than a month, she was back in business at the same location, incorporated as Taurus Management Services. (“It’s not the same place. It has a new owner,” Eason said, but she is listed as president in state records.)

This time, however, Eason was at a disadvantage. Hoffman, usually in charge, was incarcerated. The phone book, usually her chief source of new customers, was suddenly a useless advertising tool. (In order to get back her two old numbers, the ones listed under so many names, or even to get a message forwarding calls, she would have to pay off a $9,000 bill to Southern Bell.) And, technically, she wasn’t legal. She had lost her license when the old clinic folded.

In mid-July, Eason quickly secured the services of two young doctors — Dunkin, who had worked for her before, and Silvers, who needed quick cash to repay loans — and rehired a handful of her young employees.

Within a week of re-opening, she was able to schedule about 10 women a morning on each day of surgery.

Word of mouth.

So Eason simply whited out the old name and phone number on all the consent forms and scribbled in the new.

Women’s Service Center.

Dedicated since 1-24-73.

On Aug. 21, the state Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services issued Betty Eason a new license.

* * *


Dr. Robert Kast, whose insurer paid more than $500,000 to women injured in abortions, has a private practice in Boca Raton and Coral Springs. The state Department of Professional Regulation tells callers he has an active license, and is in good standing. Since leaving Eason’s clinic, he has been certified by the national board in obstetrics and gynecology, and accepted as a fellow in the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Since leaving, he hasn’t been sued for medical malpractice once.

Dr. C.B. Singh has an office in Fort Lauderdale. The state says he has an active license, and is in good standing. The state does not tell callers that it found him responsible for “gross malpractice” in the death of Ellen Williams, because Singh contested their reprimand. Four years later, his case is considered open and therefore confidential. Singh, meanwhile, says he is trying “to lead the straight and narrow path.”

Dr. Nabil Ghali, after surrendering his physicians’ license to the state of Florida, continues to fly to Ohio, from Miami, to perform abortions, legally. In June, the state gave him an HRS license to open the Blue Coral Medical Center, a new abortion clinic at 7360 SW 24th Street. He shares a doctor with Betty Eason.

Teresa R., now 23 and working as an office clerk, has moved beyond the anguish she suffered when she underwent her hysterectomy. But she cries a lot, and never dates, and when her mother asks her why not, she says, “Who’s going to want me, Mom?”